More than 100 athletes from 24 states are expected to converge in FCT Abuja for the 1st ever National Junior Taekwondo Championships, which will take place between May 16 and 17, 2018.

The event, which is being organized by the Nigeria Taekwondo Federation (NTF), aims to capture and rank the current youth taekwondo athletes across the nation.

It is also understood that the tourney will simultaneously help discover in-form youth athletes and upcoming talents that would represent the country at the African Youth Games (AYG) in Algeria.

Disclosing this on Sunday, NTF Technical Director, Engr Chika Chukwumerije who regretted that Nigeria Taekwondo is currently at a difficult crossroads because of a lack of investment in taekwondo youth added; “Since its inauguration forty years ago, the federation has never held youth-level championships, thus ensuring our inconsistency in producing elite athletes. By floating age-grade tournaments like this and encouraging participation, the federation aims to make our medal winning at internationals a consistent feature”

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The three-time Olympian further explained why the event would also be used to invite youth athletes to the national youth camp.

“It is only fair that a transparent, effective and accountable method is used to extend invitations to youth camp. This tournament removes all sentiments and ensures the initial selection are based on merit and current form.”

The national youth taekwondo championships will be a two-day event featuring the world taekwondo ten male and ten female weight categories.

Electronic scoring systems will be used in addition to medals and certificates issued to eventual winners.