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Team Nigeria departs for Australia as Commonwealth Games start

Solomon Dalung, Nigerian sports minister

The first batch of 70 athletes and coaches left Abuja at about 6pm on Saturday aboard Emirates Airline for the Gold Coast, as the XXI Commonwealth Games village opens  in Australia.

Forty six athletes in athletics, para-athletics, table tennis, para – table tennis, basketball, gymnastics, para powerlifting, weightlifting, boxing and 17 coaches, loaders and helpers as well as seven medical personnel made the trip at the weekend.

The athletes were in high spirit at the time of departure as all allowances were paid to them. Each athlete received N15,000 per day for 21 days being the period of the last phase of camping. They were also given specific competition kit and equipment.

The second batch of 9 athletes and 4 coaches will leave this week as soon as their visas are issued while the wrestling team comprising 12 wrestlers and 4 coaches will depart on April 2, 2018.

The XXI Commonwealth Games starts from April 4th -15th 2018 in Gold Coast, Australia with 71 Commonwealth teams taking part in the Games.