Sierra Leone’s Sports Minister, Ahmed Khanou, Tuesday said both the national cricket team, “The Patriots” and the national female beach volleyball squad deserve presidential gratitude for success achieved in their respective recent international competitions.

Ahmed Khanou 2

The Sierra Leone cricket team were crowned champions of the ICC-Africa T20 division II tournament in South Africa and gained division I promotion, while the female beach volleyball squad, despite narrowly missing out to qualify for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, improved their ranking to the top 6 side in Africa.

Addressing female beach volleyball players and officials who returned from Nigeria yesterday at his Bishop House office, the Sports Minister promised that he would ensure both teams receive such motivation.

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He said: “This is the first time such a welcome is being granted to our teams after successful international competition. The volleyball players were welcomed at the airport and the cricketer will receive hero’s welcome today.

“You all deserve a presidential appreciation which will serve as motivation for you and other athletes. I together with my deputy will ensure you receive that motivation gesture.”

In a related development, “The Patriots” on Tuesday officially received their gold medals and trophies in South Africa before the team’s departure. They are expected to arrive in Sierra Leone today at 16:00 hours.