Nigeria’s under-18 girls were on Saturday night, crowned champions of the IHF Women’s competition Africa Zone 3 Phase, after defeating Benin Republic in Accra, Ghana.

Cosmos Chukwuemeka, the Media Coordinator of the Handball Federation, made this known in a statement made available to newsmen in Lagos on Sunday.

The fans at the Tennis Arena of the Accra Sports Stadium were in awe of the Coach Shittu Agboola Adewunmi’s tutored girls as they conveniently earned a 42-17 victory over Benin.

Kehinde Babatunde was named the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the match for a wonderful performance.

She is the twin sister of Taiwo Babatunde, who got the MVP award in Nigeria’s first match against Liberia.

Nigeria qualifies for the IHF Women’s Trophy Continental Phase, winning four matches without losing any game in the competition.

Also, Nigeria’s Esther Matthew was voted as the Most Valuable Player of the championship while Goalkeeper Precious Samuel was picked as the Best Goalkeeper of the competition.

The President of the Handball Federation of Nigeria (HFN), Samuel Ocheho, who doubles as the President of IHF Africa Zone 3, said he is excited about the achievement.

He said that it is evident that the development programmes of the HFN to discover talents is yielding dividends.

“I am super excited that the programmes of the HFN to discover players through our underage competition is yielding dividends.

“This is a testament of the successes of our programmes and we will continue to ensure that we continue to develop the game and its continued growth,” Ocheho said.

Nigeria will represent Africa Zone 3 at the continental phase of the IHF Trophy Africa phase in a-yet-to-be announced host country soon. (NAN)