28 May 2007
NIGERIA : First Bank Aims for 21-Win Record
By Hassan Abdul
After the spectacular repeat of their performance during the first phase of the Zenith Bank female Division One league in Abuja two weeks ago in Asaba, First Bank Sports Club basketball team are already warming up to be crowned champions of the season without conceding a single defeat in the 21 match series.
They won all seven of their games in Abuja and have added a further seven from the Asaba phase.
"We are already champions as far we are concerned. To win all fourteen games is not easy. If you watched our performance in Abuja two weeks ago, I tell you that was nothing compared to what we played in Asaba last week.
"The girls are getting better as a team by the day because they understand each other more as they play more matches together and that means they are going to be more difficult to beat," Coach Adewumi Aderemi said.
They will be heading to Lagos with closest rivals, Dolphins, trailing with three loses. "Even though we do not expect any difficulty ahead of us, we will still play out best. The girls are all fired up now and it will be a very exciting final because we want to end with a record of not losing even one of our 21 matches. That will be the best statement of our quality that we can make," he added.
Sunshine Angels had compounded the woes of Dolphins - who were only one game behind First Bank in the Abuja - mid-way into the second phase with a 79 - 74 win that stunted their hopes of catching up with First Bank. They had needed to win all their matches while hoping that First Bank lose at least one game to give them some form of chance of contending for the crown.
The league will move to Lagos for the final phase next month and the defending champions are rearing to go already. Only one obstacle stands in the way of First Bank retaining their title: they will have to lose at least four games out of the remaining seven.