The Gambia Wrestling Association on Monday 12 May paid a courtesy call on Senegalese wrestling champion Balla Gaye 2 at his current base in The Gambia.
The meeting was facilitated by the Executive Secretary of the National Sports Council, Mamudou Max Jallow.
In his opening remarks, Mr Jallow thanked Musa Cessay for making the visit possible and congratulated Jaliba Kuyateh the main man behind the visit of Balla Gaye II.
He congratulated Balla Gaye and his team for coming to The Gambia and expressed his support to the Gambia Wrestling Association.
He urged the association to work with Balla's management in the promotion and development of Gambian wrestling.
Matarr Jarju, president of the Gambia Wrestling Association, extended his sincere greetings to Balla Gaye II and delegation.
He emphasised that wrestling is a game that both The Gambia and Senegal share and love. He informed the delegation that Gambians watched the recent combat of Balla Gaye on TV “which made all of us proud of Balla”.
All the Gambians were very much grateful for your victory said the Mr Jarju, who called on Balla and his manager to play their part in the Gambian wrestling.
He also called on Balla to visit The Gambia upon the association’s invitation as they are planning to organize national and International Wrestling competitions and will invite him to attend.
Burr Touray also expressed similar sentiments. He supported the president initiative, for that will be good for Gambian wrestling. Indeed to have a champion like Balla Gaye II in the Gambia wrestling upon their association’s invitation it will motivate Gambian wrestlers. He prayed to God to grant Balla long life and to continue being a winner.
Saffie Sanneh, wrestling referee, praised Balla and his manager. She reminded Balla that The Gambia and Senegal are one people of the same family.
She also called on Balla to contribute his quota to the Gambia wrestling and also recognised her support as a fan of Balla.
Soul Gaye reminded the meeting that Balla's father was a great champion in The Gambia just like Balla today. He thanked Balla for accepting to meet their association.
Abdou Shyllon, vice president of the association, praised Balla Gaye and his manager together with the renowned king of kora Jaliba Kuyateh for inviting Balla to The Gambia.
He also used the opportunity to inform Balla and manager that they are voted new to the wrestling executive two weeks back and Matarr Jarju is re-elected president for the second term in office. He called on Balla to have a wrestling arena named after him in The Gambia.
Cherno Gaye Balla's manager, for his part, said Balla is Gambian; they feel good in the country. He pointed out that if the Gambian people were not nice to them, they would have gone home since but the hospitality and love the Gambian people have for Balla Gaye is overwhelming.
They feel great in The Gambia and would do his level best to bring Balla again in the country. He said Balla will have one of his competitions here in The Gambia and even to have an arena named after him.
Balla Gaye himself said The Gambia and Senegal are one people one family. He appreciated the comments of all the speakers and promised they will do their utmost best to help Gambian wrestling get better attention and support. He wants Gambian wrestlers to go for training in Senegal.
Balla the Senegalese champion accepts the association’s invitation and called on the association to inform his management in advance so that he could make better preparations.