14 January 2006

ZIMBABWE: Pross confident ahead of tie with Jewels

HARARE Basketball Association men’s league side Pross are confident of a winning start to the second half of the season as they lock horns with Jewels today at the University courts.

Pross player-coach Steve Mudawarima has dismissed Jewels as students without a teacher.

"Jewels do not have a good coach and it is just that they managed to get some of the top players when they returned to the A League," said Muda-warima.

Jewels are coached by Addison Chiware who earlier in the week had said that they were going to give their all as they would like to minimise on defeats.

"We managed to acquire Anesu Jiri after the departure of Brian Takava-rasha who went to England and I think that our team is getting stronger.

Towards the close of last season, Pross managed to get three successive victories over some of the big teams namely Highdon Raiderz, Faithwear Jammers and Mufakose Hawks.

"If we managed to beat some of the big teams in the first half, I do not see any reason why a we would be unable to do it against Jewels.

"Anyway, there is nothing much in Jewels because they base their play on Erick (Banda) and Hazvi (Njerere) and that just goes on to show that they do not have depth in their team," said Mudawarima.

"We have our house in order and I do not think there is anything that can stop us from winning against Jewels tomorrow (today).

Mudawarima said that it was their defeat to bottom-placed Rhinos that made them review the way they were playing.

"We lost against Black Rhinos and that was when we sat down as a team and started to look at our weaknesses and given that we are aiming at making for the national championships, we had to be serious with our play.

"As long as we are focused, tomorrow we will get our play right. Most of the teams had written us off and I think now they are beginning to notice that there is something changing," said Mudawarima.

Jewels are among the top four in the league as they are sitting on third position with 27 points and are two points away from leaders and defending champions Cameo who have only lost one game so far.

And on the other hand, Pross gained four places up to settle on number seven with 23 points from 15 outings.

Meanwhile, Kizito Mudzviti (UZ Stars), Ngoni Mukukula (Highdon Raiderz), Lewis Mabika and Spencer Nyamadzawo (Gentlemen’s Associa-tion) have been selected as the Harare inter-provincial teams coaches.

Mudzviti and Mabika will be taking charge of the mens senior and Under-22 teams, with Mukukula and Nyama-dzawo in charge of the women's side respectively.

According to Simon Lawson, the HBA administrator, the teams are scheduled to be announced on Mond-ay and training will start on Friday next week.

"Clubs should be ready to release the player who would have nade it into the respective teams by next week on Friday and we are scheduled to hold a meeting tonight (last night) on the candidates who are be assistant coaches.

"The inter-provincial finals are in Midlands and Basketball Union of Zimbabwe will meet on the 28th to decide on the venue," said Lawson.

Fixtures

A-League: G.A v Cavaliers, Jewels v Pross, Mufakose Hawks v Mbare Bulls, Celtics v Black Rhinos, City Wolves v Airforce Falcons.

B-League: Stormers v Snipers, Crocodiles v Kingdom Cavaliers, Mufakose Hawks v Airforce Falcons, Crocodiles v Stormers, Nyamidzi Blazers v Nuggets.

Women: Crocodiles v Kingdom Cavaliers, Stormers v Jewels, Highdon Raiderz v Stormers.

By Paul Munyuki from http://www.herald.co.zw

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