Blazers emerge champions at the Inaugural MGI Scrabble Premier League 2019
After months of hostilities in Lagos, Port Harcourt and Abuja, Blazers Scrabble Team have won the maiden MGI Scrabble Premier League, which ended at the LilyGate Hotel, Lekki, Lagos.
Major stakeholders in scrabble graced the final of the event, which was rounded off with an award ceremony and gala night.
The Scrabble Premier League, according to the organisers, was put together to create more awareness of the sport in the country, as well as discover more talents in the game. It featured top scrabble players, including students of tertiary institutions.
Team Blazers Captain, Oshevire Avwenagha said his side’s victory was due to hard work and continuous while acknowledging that they had a tough time overcoming the opposition.
“It was not easy for Team Blazers because we had top scrabble players in other teams. But we gave our best against all odds to emerge champions.
“The club belongs to me, but I assembled the best brains in my squad.
“From the moment the league started, our vision was to beat other teams and at the end of the day we succeeded.
“We thank the organisers for creating a forum for Nigerian scrabble players to play in a league format. This league will prepare some of us going to India for the world championship,” he said.
Earlier, MGI Scrabble League organiser and brain behind the league, Lukeman Owolabi explained that he put the league together to create an enabling environment for scrabble to strive in Nigeria.
He noted that the country, which is still ranked the best scrabble nation in the world, needed to set a standard for other countries to emulate.
“In the beginning, I thought putting something like this together would not attract people. “
But with determination and my desire to ensure scrabble grew in the country, I gave it a try. I thank God it was not in vain as all scrabble players in Nigeria turned out in various clubs to take part.
“My key objective is to establish an African society where illiteracy, drug abuse, cultism, and other social vices will not thrive through the intellectual involvement of youths in a mind sport like scrabble.
“By next year, more teams will join the league and then it will have the top and low divisions.
“We need more sponsors to key into the sport because it has great potential to yield resources like football. We are also engaging students by training them in scrabble,” he declared.
The chairman of the event, former Minister for industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah, who was represented at the gala night, congratulated the organisers for engaging the players in a competitive game.
At the league, Team Brainiacs placed second and earned N500, 000, while Team Airpopper won the third position and N300, 000.
Eta Paul Karo of Team Brainiacs was awarded the Most Valuable Player of the championship (MVP) award, which fetched him N100, 000.
Members of Team Blazers are Cyril Umebiye, Oshevire Avwenagha, George Ezinore, Tega Okiemute, Sylvanus Ikpere, Larry Etuwa and Florence Akhiri.
12 teams participated in the MGI Scrabble League. They are Blazers, Brainiacs, Airpopper, Bulldozers, FRSC Roadies, Gracious Pickers, Hurricanes, Lekki Bombers, Olowoyeye Predators, Phoenix, Supreme and Tekena Drones.
Provided by Lukeman Owolabi