By Pa Modou Faal
The Nottingham Sports Group (NSG) held its yearly sport activity at the Forest Recreation ground as part of activities marking the Nottingham Sports Festival.
The tournament, which was held in July, is the second edition since the end of the pandemic.
The two days activity was a showcase of young and elderly talents in the form of competitive football matches.
Participants in the tournament came from many towns and suburbs within Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.
Fourteen teams participated under the notion of an international tournament where different countries were represented by their citizens.
It was a tournament that aimed to bring people who come from the same country but do not have time to socialize or have fun together.
NSG’s objective towards holding this event is to create an environment where everyone in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire can come together through the medium of sports especially football.
The tournament was coordinated by the Chair of NSG Amdani Juma and Wilfred McKenzie who is the manager of all sporting activities for NSG.
Mr. Juma reiterated the need to hold such events because they foster unity, peace, and cohesion within our various communities.
He however registered the difficulties they face in organising the events, key among which, is finance.
He said the committee buys medals, all the different kinds of trophies and refreshment as well as pay the fee to hire the ground with very inadequate funds.
Amdani Juma called on local government authorities, corporate entities, and other organisations to join them in their drive to attain such a noble initiative.
He commended Mojatu Foundation and National Lottery for coming into their aid, without which, this year’s activities would not have been held.
Wilfred McKenzie who is a registered qualified sports administrator and coach said they expected a better turnout because the weather was nice and many people like playing under such conditions.
He also pointed at the issue of funding being a great obstacle for the committee because players expect some form of cash prize after winning which with the current conditions, is impossible for them to provide.
McKenzie also said match officials are supposed to get their pay immediately after the tournament.
Many players who took part in the event commended NSG for coming up with such laudable initiative.
Most of them emphasised the need to organise such events more frequently because it brings peace among the people and at the same time gives them fun and improves their mental and physical wellbeing.
This year’s tournament saw the 2021 winners Tiki Taka defend their title in a tightly contested match against the Robin Hood team.
Individual trophies were awarded to winners before being presented with the title trophy by the NSG Chairman Amdani Juma.
The runners-up Tiki Taka players were decorated with individual trophies each before both teams posed for a group photo.