No fewer than 15 states are participating in the traditional boxing competition, popularly knows as “Dambe”, in Yola, the capital of Adamawa State, officials have said.
At the second joint council meeting of National Sports Festival held in December last year in Benin, Dambe was included in the national sports calendar.
Mr. Adamu Mu’azu, the Chairman, Adamawa Dambe Traditional Boxing Association, said that about 40 traditional boxers from 15 states of the northern region were participating in the competition.
He stated, “The competition was organised to bring Dambe local boxers together and to build cordial relationships between teeming youths from the north.
“Also, the competition is in preparation for the National Sports Festival, tagged Edo 2020,” Mu’azu said.
The Acting Director, Adamawa Sports Council, Mrs. Esther Dominic, who said that they were happy that Dambe traditional boxing was officially recognised by the national sports council, also explained that they would use the competition as an opportunity to select Dambe boxers to represent the state in Edo 2020, which will hold in March.
She noted that the state government had equally recognised Dambe traditional boxing among its sports associations.
“After Edo 2020, we are going down to grassroots to pick many talents to enable us form a strong Dambe team that can represent the state anywhere in the world sports competition, ” Dominic said.
The host, Adamawa, Taraba, Gombe and Bauchi states are among the states participating in the Yola competition.
Others are Yobe, Borno, Kano, Kaduna and Jigawa as well as Niger, Plateau and Kebbi States.
Sokoto, Katsina, Kogi and Zamfara states also have their representatives in the competition.
So far Shagon Kudu from Kaduna State has defeated Shagon Arewa in the first round.
Four referees and five judges are manning the competition.