27 October 2007

TANZANIA : Holders Dar easily retain Taifa Cup titles

By Oliver Albert
Dar es Salaam easily retained their men's and women's Taifa Cup basketball titles yesterday.Dar defeated Mwanza 100-79 in an entertaining men's final at Dar es Salaam's National Indoor Stadium. The defending champions led 24-21, 47-35 and 70-48 in the first three quarters.

Charles Makene and Mohamed Ali "Dibo" scored 18 points apiece for Dar while Kizito Bahati emerged as Mwanza's top scorer with 20 points to his name.

Earlier, Dar retained their women's title after brushing aside Shinyanga 58-27.
The match was something of an anti-climax for basketball fans who had expected Shinyanga to at least give the defending champions a run for their money in a closely contested encounter. It was clear that the match was going to be a one-sided affair when Dar raced to a 22-5 first-quarter lead before stretching their advantage to 32-18 at the halfway mark.

Hapless Shinyanga were reduced to chasing shadows as the title-holders strolled to a 46-21 lead at the end of the third quarter before putting their opponents out of their misery in an equally lopsided final quarter.

Shinyanga seemed resigned to their fate as early as the second quarter, and most of their players were clearly glad to hear the final buzzer as their opponents hugged one another in celebration.

Nelly Anyingisye was Dar's top scorer with 19 points while Elizabeth Masenyi contributed nine points to the defending champions' haul.

The Dar men's and women's teams both finished the championships with 100 per cent records.
Earlier, Shinyanga defeated Mwanza 62-52 to finish third in the women's tournament.
Sheila Kibwana and Agnes Ayoub scored 20 and 15 points respectively for Shinyanga while Mwanza's leading scorers were Fatuma Hamisi and Candida Nzomukunda with 11 and six points respectively.

Zanzibar beat Mbeya 58-56 in the men's third place playoff.Zanzibar led 18-11 at the end of the first quarter, but the tables were turned as Mbeya led 32-26 and 44-42 in the next two quarters before Zanzibar stepped up their game to snatch a narrow win in the final quarter. The leading scorers were Mbeya's Lusajo Samuel (20) and Gomba Muhondo (11).

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