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11.07.2009 Hockey

Ghana to bid for All Africa Games

By gna
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Accra, July 10, GNA – Vice President John Mahama has said that Ghana will bid for the hosting rights of the All Africa Games in the immediate future.

“After successful hosting the Ghana 2008 Africa Cup of Nations and now the Hockey Africa Cup for Nations, Ghana 2009, the focus should be the All Africa Games,” Vice President remarked on Friday during the opening ceremony of 9th edition of the Hockey Africa Cup for Nations at the National Hockey stadium in Accra.

Ghana has yet to host the quadrennial event and the Vice President has expressed optimism in the nation's ability to stage Africa's version of the Olympics sooner than expected.

Mr Mahama said the successful organization of the two tourneys puts Ghana in a good stead to bid for bigger international championships.

Highlighting on the slogan for the tourney, “Lets Begin to Dream again”, the Vice President said Ghana should dream of bigger championship with the Olympic Games inclusive.

He assured Government's commitment towards making the dreams become a positive reality.

Mr Mahama expressed the hope that the tourney which has four participants will serve as a platform for the promotion and development of hockey in the country and Africa as well.

Abuga Pele, Chairman of the Local Organising Committee expressed his outfit's determination to host a successful and memorable tourney.

The opening ceremony was climaxed by a colourful cultural display by the Noyam African Dance Institute.

The performance, which drew cheers and applause from the packed crowd, was themed on the birth of African hockey.

The performers, carrying flags of the participating teams, Ghana, South Africa, Egypt and Nigeria, epitomized African cultural beauty amidst drumming and dancing.

The turning point was an egg that was split open after the cultural performance to signify the birth of African hockey and therein emerge male and football players from the egg holding aloft their hockey sticks ready for a match.

After the cultural performance a series of fireworks came on that ignited the National Hockey Stadium into ectacy and bring the atmosphere alive.

In an earlier opening match, Egypt beat Nigeria 2-1 whilst hosts Ghana were humbled 8-0 by African champions, South Africa.

The tournament, the first being hosted by Ghana ends on July 18.


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