From George Aluo, Houston
All is now set for the annual convention of ex-Rangers International of Enugu which holds today in Houston, USA.
It was a full house of who is who in the ex-Rangers family last night at Comfort Suites, Stafford, Houston as former players of the Flying Antelopes and their friends arrived from different parts of the United States.
Chairman of the body, Stone Igwebuike was on cloud nine last night ahead of the event moments after arriving from his base in Washington.
Igwebuike on arrival at the venue told Daily Sunsports that all is set for the annual reunion that would start with a novelty football match.
In his words: “We are set for the convention. We have hundreds of our members in Houston. The likes of Sam Onyeaka, Ikechukwu Ofoje, Macbeth Chiaka, Nnamdi Anyafo are all on ground. Ex internationals like Segun Odegbami, Samson Siasia and Omoni Dafe who played for Insurance are all here. For us, it is fun and this year’s event is unique because this is exactly 40 years that Rangers conquered Africa. Some of us who performed that historic feat are thanking God we are alive today. We want to give kudos to our patron, Benson Ejindu for his support,” Igwebuike said.
Meanwhile the former Rangers players have called on the government to stop the culture of neglecting the nation’s sporting heroes. The ex-Rangers image maker, Emmanuel Merenini pointed out that with a better welfare package, Kelechi Emeteole who died recently would probably have survived.
“You can see the way Emeteole passed on after a battle with throat cancer. He (Kelechi) died without government doing something to save him. This was a man that not only played for Rangers but also laced boots for the country. He went ahead to coach the Eagles and yet when he needed the country, the government was not there for him. This is sad. The government back home must have a good welfare package for sportsmen that have served the country. That is the only way to encourage the youths to serve the country,” Merenini said.