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World Champion, Nigel Richards had confirmed his participation in the competition that carries a grand prize of $22,000 for Masters category, $10,000 for intermediate and $18,000 for Open and Veterans in addition to other consolation prizes in all the categories.
The President of the Nigeria Scrabble Federation, Suleiman Gora said in Uyo that all is set for the event that will attract the best of world class scrabble players from all over the world.
Mr Gora, who was in Uyo to hold “crucial talks” on the classics with the Chairman of Akwa Ibom State Scrabble Association, Mr Ufot Edem, said every effort had been intensified to make this 8th edition the “……biggest yet,” even as he assured on the participation of the world champion, Nigel Richards and 50 other foreign players, who had written to confirm their participation.
On whether the Ebola scourge will affect foreign participation, the nation’s Scrabble boss said: “In as much as we are not expecting our brothers from Sierra Leone and Liberia, the effort put in place by the Federal Government to manage the spread of the virus here in Nigeria had received commendation world wide, making Nigeria a safe country to visit and to stay, hence the attendance of over 50 confirmed foreign players from USA, Pakistan, Thailand, UK, Kenya, Zambia, and South Africa among others.”
The state Chairman, Mr Ebong said they were ready as host to guarantee the standard that the Classics had been elevated to over the years. “…Already, various sub committees have been put in place and they are working round the clock to ensure a flawless Classics in line with the dreams of the sponsor, a man who does not accept mediocrity.”
He went on to pay glowing tributes to His Excellency, Governor Godswill Akpabio for keeping faith with the Classics, even with the promise that it will continue, even when he is not in office. “…His Excellency has done well for Scrabble in the world, Nigeria in particular and we will remain grateful.”