Kandakai Awarded Olympic Scholarship

first_imgThe International Olympic Committee (IOC) through the Olympic Solidarity has awarded a 7-week scholarship in “Tennis Science” to the Technical Director of Liberia Tennis Federation (LTF), Coach Alfred Kandakai.The scholarship was offered to Coach Kandakai owing to recommendation from the LTF and the Liberia National Olympic Committee (LNOC) as the only Level 2 International Tennis Federation (ITF) certified coach in the country.The specialized tennis training will be held at the Centro de Tenis Altur/Alvarino in Valencia, Spain from 7th September to 25th October.The training will provide him experience and knowledge to serve in other areas in the structures of the sport’s development.Olympic Solidarity will provide a return travel cost, boarding and lodging (meals and laundry only) and pocket money of US$100 per week.Some of the items, which will not be covered, are the scholarship holder’s personal sports equipment and extras such as telephone calls, amongst others.In an exclusive interview with Coach Kandakai yesterday, he disclosed that he would depart the country on Monday for La Cote d’Ivoire to obtain the visa and thereafter fly from the Abidjan to Spain.He expressed thanks and appreciation to the LTF and the LNOC for the recommendations and IOC for the scholarship.“I am happy to go and increase my knowledge and experience and come back to impact the lives of others,” Coach Kandakai said.He also thanked Mr. Stefana Eleno of the EU for the purchase of his ticket and Tani Hana of the Oceano Casino at the Mamba Point Hotel for U$1,000 for sponsoring his trip to La Cote d’Ivoire.Coach Kandakai, 41, has been with the LTF for over 18 years.Besides providing volunteer training to kids and the aged, he also has extra classes for interested individuals in and around the Monrovia.As a tennis coach and trainer, he nurtured his son, Saah Kandakai, who is currently in the USA – the top single male player for the Trenton High School.LNOC Secretary General Joseph F. Willie, said the LNOC has also applied for technical training for tennis and taekwondo coaches for 2016.“If the two applications are accepted, the total persons to benefit from the LNOC will be 16,” Mr. Willie said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Wenger warns top-four rivals: Arsenal are preparing for ‘big battle’

first_imgArsenal manager Arsene Wenger has admitted he is preparing for a “big battle” as the Gunners look to secure another top four finish in the Premier League.The Gunners currently sit in fifth but are level on 42 points with fourth placed Southampton following a thumping 5-0 home win over Aston Villa on Sunday.It was a third straight league victory for the north London side, who swept aside the top flight strugglers despite the injury absence of top scorer Alexis Sanchez, with Olivier Giroud, Mesut Ozil, Theo Walcott, Santi Cazorla and teenage full-back Hector Bellerin all on the scoresheet at the Emirates Stadium.This season’s race for Champions League qualification is setting up to be the most open contest for years, with the Gunners, the Saints, Manchester United, Tottenham and Liverpool all still in contention, and even West Ham just six points outside the top four.And Wenger knows there remains plenty of hard work ahead, with the Frenchman saying his side must focus on maintaining their consistency to ensure Arsenal’s place.The Frenchman said: “We’re 11 points behind [league leaders] Chelsea. We want to get as close to them as possible, but at the moment they’re too far for us [to catch them].“We’re not looking behind, what is important is to look in front.“It’s a big battle to be in the top four. Everyone has quality and we need to be consistent to be in there.“We have maybe found a better consistency, that will be very important until the end.“Let’s show that we can win more and it shows you as well that when the confidence level is higher and when everybody’s back defensively, it makes a difference.”On the Gunners’ impressive attacking display against Villa, Wenger added: “Our offensive game was good, even though I believe we had some weaker periods in the game when Aston Villa were in possession.“We always looked dangerous when we got their lines and defensively we were sound as well. Overall it is a positive day for us.”Arsenal signed centre-half Gabriel Paulista last week from Villarreal, and the Brazilian was among the unused substitutes.It was a much-needed arriving for the Gunners, who have suffered numerous injuries at the back this season, but Wenger is not expecting a hectic final 24 hours of the transfer window before Monday night’s deadline.“I don’t think I will be busy,” he said.“We have done what we wanted and, unless there is a huge surprise and somebody calls me, then why not? [But] at the moment, nothing. It’s very quiet.”last_img read more