Who is Chioma?
Chioma’s love for sports goes as far back as her early childhood. Growing up with four elder brothers and a football-crazed father, Chioma could recite the rules of football by the time she was five. It started off with football, but Chioma’s interest did not end there. This became normal to see her sitting in front of her screen, watching a football or tennis match with enraptured eyes. It was almost logical that Chioma got into sports by the time she turned ten, playing tennis and basketball on weekends. “My mother was totally against the idea, but I am my father’s only daughter, his Adaeze (precious egg). Honestly, she had no choice because it was usually whatever I said that went.” The confusion from other people and the ‘tomboy’ tag attributed to her did not make her interest in sports wan. Instead, it fuelled that passion. “I needed to prove everyone wrong. At such a young age, I was already battling against stereotypes. It was so tiring but luckily for me, I am stubborn.”
Reading and writing never interested Chioma much, not until she turned 14. “When I was in SS1, Second Class Citizen by Buchi Emecheta changed my life. It was almost like everything started making sense. I found myself reading books that were not even on my book list. It created a thirst that I didn’t even know existed.” Chioma’s first encounter with writing was the article she wrote for the school magazine, an article on football. “I did not realize it then but that was the start of my life as I know it now.”
After Chioma obtained her bachelor’s degree and completed her NYSC serving, the only thing on her mind was getting another degree. “When I told my father that I was going to do a Masters, I could see the disappointment in his eyes. He asked me if the degree was going to give him grandchildren.” The period after getting a master’s degree in European Languages and Integrated Studies was one of the hardest for Chioma. “My dad died, and I had to adjust to a life without him in it. The aftermath was really crazy.”
Following the death of her father, Chioma started a sports-related blog. It was mainly inspired by the lengthy discussions she used to have with her father with her own personal touch. If anyone had told Chioma that she would let go of her well-paying marketing job for a career in writing, she would have laughed in their face.
The blog she started on a whim started gaining traction, and it was only after six months of writing that Chioma started taking herself and her writing more seriously. “I never could imagine that I would ever be able to make money from writing. So, when a friend of mine told me about the Sports Betting NG vacancy and encouraged me to apply, I was very reluctant. As in, who was going to hire me?” Chioma got over her initial fear and it has been a passionate adventure since then. Her marketing skills combined with her clever and engaging wordplay made her a perfect fit.
When Chioma is not worrying her head about the best kind of content to write, she is probably in front of her television, in her Real Madrid jersey, watching BBNaija and eating hot chicken shawarma. The latest show she is currently on is Young, Famous and African. You can find Chioma on Twitter as @Chi_G_O where she is the most opinionated and free-spirited version of herself.