A major taekwondo event due to be held in Nigeria next month has been postponed until February to allow more athletes the chance to enter the competition, it has been announced.
The Nigeria Open, officially sanctioned by World Taekwondo and given a G1 international rating by the organisation, was scheduled to take place from November 16 to 18 in Abuja.
It has now been decided to hold the tournament in the New Year, with February 8 to 10 the preferred dates of the Nigeria Taekwondo Federation (NTF).
NTF technical director Chika Chukwumerije told The Eagle Online that the postponement of the event was to enable athletes from Nigeria and other West African countries to complete the World Taekwondo global membership system (GMS) licence.
"More than 150 competitiors from nine countries in West Africa are working hard to obtain the mandatory GMS licence, which will enable them register for the event," he said.
"The postponement gives the competitors three months to obtain a valid GMS licence and benefit from the world taekwondo ranking event.
"A new competition date of February 8 to 10 has been proposed to the world body and once an approval is given, it will be communicated to all."
The event will be the second edition of the Nigeria Open.
It will be the first taekwondo competition ever to take place in Nigeria with an international ranking.
Achieving this status had been a priority for the NTF.