People Sports

60 Sports Icons: Kanu, Garba Lawal And Perpetual Nkwocha Top List

60 Nigeria Sports icons recognized by the Ministry of Sports.

Table Tennis legend, Funke Oshonaike, Jay-Jay Okocha, and Nwankwo Kanu were among the 60 sports icons honoured by the Ministry of Sports to celebrate Nigeria’s 60 years of Independence.

Members of the Super Eagles teams of 1980, 1994, Atlanta 1996 as well as track and Field and boxing dominated the list of the 60 sports icons that were unveiled during the celebration of Nigeria’s most outstanding sports icons of the last sixty years.

The event which took place at the Velodrome of the Moshood Abiola National Stadium Abuja Friday, October 16th will have the pictures of the stars on display for 60 days.

According to the votes cast to pick the exceptional stars through various platforms, Mercurial Super Eagles players like Nwankwo Kanu, Austin Jay-Jay Okocha, Daniel Amokachi, Garba Lawal, Emmanuel Amunike of the famed 1994 and Atlanta 1996 Dream Team were selected by a wide variety of Nigerians.

Also selected are the 1980 Green Eagles that won Nigeria’s maiden Nations Cup on home soil with Team captain Christian Chukwu and Segun Odegbami listed individually. Emmanuel Okala and Mudashiru Lawal were also picked as the symbol of the 1980 Green Eagles.

The Golden Eagles of 1985 that paraded the likes of Captain Nduka Ugbade, Victor Igbinoba, and coached by Sebastian Brodricks – Imasuen were also recognised.

Nigerian first Olympics medallist Nojeem Maiyegun, first individual Gold medallist Chioma Ajunwa, Mary Onyali, Sunday Bada, Commonwealth Games Medalists Olawunmi Majekodunmi, Samuel Igun, world boxing champions Hoggan Kid Bassey, Dick Tiger, Chidi Imoh, female Wrestler Odunayo Adekuruoye also made the list.

Fabulous footballer Teslim Thunder Balogun, Ace radio commentators Mazi Ernest Okonkwo, Dr. Larry Izamoje, Sports Philanthropist Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Chief Moshood Abiola, Chief Adebutu Kensington among others also made the icons list.

However, Out of the sixty legends honoured only six were on ground to receive their plagues.

Minister of Youth And Sport, Sunday Dare revealed that there was no money to invite the others to the ceremony.

We asked for nominations and received over 3,400. But the committee which was set up had a difficult task in picking 60 of them because we have hundreds who have represented this county well“.

However, you are seeing a few of the icons here due to the cost implications.“First we needed to keep their names classified. We didn’t want to unveil them before the unveiling proper. Some of them are just finding out about it in the media.

“There is also a budget consideration. We decided to bring six of them to represent the others.

Full List of 60 Sports Icons

  1. Chioma Ajunwa
  2. Mary Onyali
  3. Jighere Wellington
  4. Odion Aikhoje
  5. Duncan Dokiware
  6. Austin Okocha
  7. Kanu Nwankwo
  8. Feyisetan Are
  9. Blessing Okagbare
  10. Garba Lawal
  11. Lucy Ejike
  12. Falilat Ogunkoya/Atlanta 96 Women’s 4x400m Quartet
  13. Sunday Bada/Sydney 2000 Men’s 4x400m Quartet
  14. Football Dream Team, Atlanta 1996 Olympics
  15. Emmanuel Amunike
  16. Chika Chukwumerije
  17. Davidson Ezinwa
  18. Odunayo Adekuoroye
  19. Modupe Oshikoya
  20. Peter Konyegwachie
  21. Olusoji Fasuba
  22. Nduka Ugbade/Sebastine Broadricks Emasuen/1985 GOLDEN EAGLETS
  23. Hogan Bassey
  24. Dick Tiger
  25. Samuel Peters
  26. Barcelona 92′ quartet (Men’s 4x100m Relay)
  27. Funke Oshonaike
  28. Segun Odegbami
  29. D’Tigress
  30. Segun Toriola
  31. Roland Ezuruike
  32. Mayegun Nojeem
  33. SAM IGUN
  34. Israel Adesanya
  35. Super Eagles 1994
  36. Olumide Oyedeji
  37. Blessing Oborududu
  38. Tompraba Grikpa
  39. Chidi Imoh
  40. Christian Chukwu
  41. Ajibola Adeoye
  42. Stephen Keshi
  43. Atanda Musa
  44. Muda Lawal/Emmanuel Okala/Green Eagles 1980
  45. Daniel Amokachi
  46. Rashidi Yekini
  47. Teslim Thunder Balogun
  48. Perpetual Nkwocha
  49. Super Falcons
  50. Power Mike
  51. Flora Ugwunwa
  52. Lauretta Onye
  53. Sam Okwaraji
  54. Nduka Odizor
  55. David Izonrite
  56. Chief MKO Abiola
  57. Dr. Larry Izamoje
  58. Mazi. Ernest Okonkwo
  59. Alh. Aliko Dangote
  60. Chief Sir Kensington Adebutu

About the author

Taiwo Ibrahim

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