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UAM Tillers, DELSU Titans qualify HiFL’s round of 16

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EKSU, KASU are new boys on the block

Maiden champions of the Higher Institutions Football League (HiFL), UAM Tillers of Makurdi, have qualified for the round of 16 of the 2022 season. The Tillers will be joined by 2019 and 2021 quarterfinalists, UNILORIN Warriors and the LASU Blazers.

DELSU Titans and UNIPORT Sharks are staging a comeback after missing out from the round of 16 since their first appearance in 2018.

Speaking on the Games, Chief Operating Officer at Pace Sports and Entertainment Marketing Limited, Goodness Onyejiaku, said all qualified schools have demonstrated their commitment to growing the league despite the challenges.

“We are pleased that HiFL has now broken a few records for the calibre of players the league is putting forth. Scouts from all across the nation are now watching games more closely to spot talent, especially for kids who have decided to pursue a career in football.

“We truly appreciate the support of our sponsors, particularly, StanbicIBTC, Bold and the Lagos State Inland Revenue Services. We are also pleased with our partner, the Nigeria University Games Association (NUGA), which has ensured that we get the games going,” Onyejiaku said.

Meanwhile, Kaduna State University and Ekiti State University will be playing in the round of 16 for the first time since they started participating in the competition.

According to the rules of the competition, the 12 teams that qualified from the group stage will join the Super Four teams from the 2021 edition.

The four teams are the 2021 champions, UNIMAID Desert Warriors, AAUA Luminaries from the Adekunle Ajasin University Akungba Akoko, UNN Lions and the FUTMINNA Transformers, Minna.

The remaining teams in the round of 16 are the ATBU Bravehearts, Bauchi, BUK Stallions, Kano, KSU Steelers, Ayingba, FUOYE Dazzlers, Oye Ekiti and the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education (IAUE) Minders, Port Harcourt.

Speaking on the competition, NUGA President, Emeka Ogbu, described the HiFL as ‘full of surprises,’ and advised fans to prepare for more thrilling matches.

He added: “This season, amazing talents are emerging on our campuses. We appreciate all of our sponsors for supporting this big project and the good sportsmanship of the participating colleges. Even as they conveniently combine sports and academics with the backing of the university management, NUGA and HiFL are committed to their mandate of offering sporting chances for students in Nigerian universities to thrive. We are pleased with the achievements made in this area.”

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