By Victor Onajero
The need to see grassroots sports development as a means of discovering talents, curbing social vices and building unity across communities in Delta State, took centre stage at the finals of the Olorogun David Edevbie Ovwian Peace Cup.
Wolves of Achophe Quarters emerged champions after a dramatic 3-2 penalty shootout win over The Wonder Boys of Ozimi Quarters.
The final played at the football pitch of Ovwian Primary School, Udu, attracted football lovers, stakeholders and dignitaries who came out in their numbers despite the new year celebration across the world.
Following a pulsating 90 minutes of football artistry, the tie ended 1-1, thus requiring penalty shootouts to determine the inaugural champions of the tournament.
After 10 tension soaked penalties, Wolves of Achophe goalkeeper, Theophilus Emuobosa, stole the spotlight as he saved 3 spot-kicks to hand his side the victory amidst huge celebrations.
A cash sum of three hundred thousand naira and the gold trophy was handed to the winners, Wolves of Achophe Quarters, while one hundred and fifty thousand naira and a silver trophy were handed to the runners-up, Wonder Boys of Ozimi.
Special awards were also given to the Most Valuable Player of the tournament, Best Goalkeeper amongst others.
Players and coaches of both sides showered encomiums on the Local Organizing Committee of the Olorogun David Edevbie Ovwian Peace Cup led by Comrade Austin Akaba and the Chief Host, Olorogun David Edevbie, for providing a platform for them to showcase their talents.
They also commended the 2023 Delta State gubernatorial aspirant for his efforts in building youths in the community and urged him not to rest on his oars.
Earlier in his opening remark, Olorogun David Edevbie, represented by the State Coordinator, Focus and Support Groups for Olorogun David Edevbie Campaign Organisation, Chief Monday Keme, said sports development at the grassroots remains one of the key to youth development and it is the desire of Olorogun David Edevbie to nurture and encourage young talents that would become global icons.
Chief Keme also encouraged youths of Ovwian at Deltans ast large to remain peaceful and committed to initiatives that would bring desired results in their lives and society at large.
While speaking with Newsnet correspondent, the Convener, Olorogun David Edevbie Ovwian Peace Cup, Comrade Austin Akaba, lauded both teams for putting up a brilliant display as they proved once again that talent abounds to be harnessed in the grassroots.
The Convener, Delta Canvass Team for Edevbie 23, DCT-EDEVBIE 23, also commended Olorogun David Edevbie for partnering with the Ovwian community in building youths as well as using sports as a symbol to build and sustain peaceful co-existence amongst communities in Udu Local Government Area.