27.09.2003 Sports News

Baah Wiredu urges corporate bodies to spread net wider

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Accra, Sept. 27, GNA - Mr Kwadwo Baah Wiredu, Minister of Education, Youth and Sports has urged corporate organisations to help replicate the Accra Milo Marathon in other regional capitals to produce many high-class marathon runners to represent the country at the international stage.

He said by so doing, the Accra Milo marathon would become the grand finale after a series of regional preliminaries. The Minister made the suggestion at the 17th edition of the race which was won by 25 year-old photographer David Zigah at the Dansoman Keep fit club on Saturday.

Zigah clocked 2:27:13, seven minutes better than the time he made last year. His closest follower in the Saturday's race was Victor Ashiagbor, a lance corporal of the Ghana Armed Forces who recorded 2:37:19.

Debutant and national 1,500 metre champion, Iddriss Adams, 17, who produced a last minute gasp sprint but could only manage a third spot in a time of 2:38:47 was greatly applauded by the fans who had lined up along the road to catch a glimpse of the athletes.

Zigah took home a cheque for 1,000 dollars, a Royal Dutch Airline (KML) economy class ticket to compete in the prestigious Amsterdam marathon and products from the sponsors, Milo. He together with Millicent Boadi who also stamped her authority in the ladies division with a record third consecutive win will represent the nation at the event.

Mr Wiredu said when the annual event is spread nation-wide; it will help raise long distant runners to compete with the Kenyans and Ethiopians, who have dominated the world for a very long time. "I think we have the men and women to do it and with the support of government, we can make in-rolls to compete for recognition at the world level", he said.

The Minister said his outfit has plans to fence and re-grass as many playing fields as possible as one of the ways of promoting and development of sports in the country.

He said recognition will b e given to all those who have contributed to sports, be they athletes, journalists, administrators among others, for the younger generation to emulate.

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