The capital of Cross Rivers State Calabar in South South zone of Nigeria is housing Africa’s first ever facility for a new game called Curling.
According to the President of Nigeria Curling Federation (NCF) Mr Daniel Damola, construction of the Ice Rink in Calabar has begun, with the project being in its early stages.
Featuring on the BCOS TV sports programme Saturday Breakfast Sports Show anchored by Boluwaji Ogunmola and produced by Adewale Tijani, Mr Damola disclosed that the project when completed will have two ice facilities – one for curling and the other will be for ice sports, in addition to a bar, and conference centre.
“Currently, the project is in its early development stages. The first task of clearing the land and fencing the entire property is now underway”, he said.
The President, Nigeria Curling Federation, who hinted on the sports programme that the facility is expected to be completed by December 2021, expressed optimism that the facility will not only make Calabar the Mecca of curlers from various parts of the world but also draw more tourists to Cross River state.
While explaining the reasons behind the choice of Calabar, the Germany based NCF President pointed out that Cross River state has the perfect climatic condition to play the game of curling and also to house the facility.
He explained: “We all know that Cross River State is the Tourism Capital of Nigeria. And traditionally, ice sports are performed in cold regions. Actually Port Harcourt and Cross River are ideal locations for the sports but the Port Harcourt’s terrain wouldn’t suit the kind of facility that require all year presence of cold weather. So we settled for Calabar because its weather is suitable for the game and also fits into our plan”.
Mr Damola further noted that the manner at which the Government of the state has managed COVID-19 outbreak made the state unique and also influenced their decision to site the facility in the state.
Undoubtedly new and unknown to many sports fans and enthusiasts in this part of the world, the game of curling originated from Scotland.
Since becoming a member of World Curling Federations in 2018, the Nigeria Curling Federation has been striving to make the sport grow in the country, in addition to ensuring that its presence is felt at the global level.
The leadership of Nigeria Curling Federation is taking its efforts to the next level by building Africa’s first ever dedicated curling facility.
As a new and growing association with 55 professionals and nearly 900 registered curlers, the Nigeria Curling Federation has been using Rock Solid Production’s Floorcurl equipment to teach locals about curling and develop the game.
Last year, Nigeria made history as the first African country to feature and win a match at a World Championship when her representatives Tijani and Susana Cole beat Manon Humbert and David Baumgartner of France in a round-robin contest at the event in Norway.