The Regional Qualifiers for the 2022 PriceWaterhouse Coopers (PwC) National Under 17 Cricket Championship got underway on Saturday with close to 800 kids on parade across six centres.

The Championship, run by the Nigeria Cricket Federation has its highest number of entrants this year with 31 states entering male teams while 25 female teams participated.

President of the Nigeria Cricket Federation, Uyi AKpata, said the event has become one of the key development indicators for Cricket in the country, especially on the measure of recruitment, engagement of young players, national spread and gender balance.

“We are very particular about the level of growth we are pursuing. The PwC National under 17 Championship helps the Federation model it to the respective states,” he said.

Uyi said the model for the event is such that irrespective of the winning state, only regional teams compete at the national finals.

“The best players are selected from the participating states and of course with emphasis on exceptional talents across the teams in the regional qualifiers, and led by the coach of the winning team” he added.

Tolu Adeleke, Partner at PwC said the event connects with the values of the firms and he believes the 784 kids that took part in the two-day Regional Qualifying stage, apart from being challenged to raise their skill level, must have made a new friend across their state.

“We are about the diversity and using same to strengthen the society, The PwC National U-17 Championship fits perfectly to that” he added.

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