Art and Culture

Nigeria in Desperate Bid for Commonwealth Games Kits after Team Let Down by Supplier

todayJuly 30, 2022

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Nigeria’s delegation of 94 athletes arrived in the UK this week to take part in the Commonwealth Games – but had to scramble to secure some kits to use during the event.

A British sportwear brand stepped in to help Nigerian athletes who were let down by their original kit supplier just days before the start of the Commonwealth Games.

The Nigerian delegation arrived in the Midlands ready to gun for Commonwealth Games glory over the next 11 days. But a major problem soon emerged as it became clear they were going to be let down by the company due to supply their outfits.

And so they had to scramble to find-a last minute supplier to make sure they could still compete. In stepped Kidderminster firm MG Sportswear, who were approached to manufacture hundreds of pieces of clothing with an extremely tight deadline.

After telling the BBC he originally thought the call was “a wind up”, manager Gino Ruffinato said: “As it progressed I started getting emails with orders on, so at that point I thought, hang on, I think this is serious.

“When they hit us with the deadline saying it needs to be there for Friday and today was Tuesday… there’s all the fabric, the print, the designs to get out in two days. It was a bit hair-raising.”

Such a monumental task meant Ruffinato and his staff of 14 were at “panic stations” as they worked around the clock to make sure everything was made in time. Needed by the Nigerian athletes were 200 pieces of kit and 400 badges to be placed upon them.

“Everybody’s embraced it, they’ve worked hard and done many hours to make sure it happens,” he added, before setting off to deliver the items to Birmingham personally. “I still pinch myself – I’ll be looking on the telly and seeing the MG Sportswear brand for a national team. It’s wonderful.”

Nigeria is confident of a decent medals haul over the next 11 days. One athlete to watch will be Oluwatobilola Amusan, who set a new world record time of 12.12 seconds in the women’s 100m hurdles at the World Athletics Championships this month.

Long jumper Ese Brume is also fancied after winning a silver medal in Oregon. Other medal hopes come in the form of both their men’s and women’s relay teams, while wrestling could also yield glory after a strong showing from Nigeria at the Tokyo Olympics.

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todayJuly 30, 2022

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