07 February 2008

KENYA : Alarm Over Loss On Interest in Basketball

Sammy Kitula

The Nairobi Secondary Schools Sports Association (NSSSA) has raised concern the apparent lack of interest by some city schools in basketball.

With the NSSSA) first term games already underway, many schools have opted out of this year's basketball season. Hillcrest and Aga Khan High school have pulled out, while Jamhuri High School are yet to honour their fixtures.

According to the NSSSA basketball secretary, Peter Manundu, this trend will adversely affect the future of basketball in the city, as well as having individual talent go to waste.

"It's quite alarming to realise that some schools have decided to do away with basketball in their calendar of sports. Whereas schools in other provinces are busy recruiting and introducing the game to their students, others are losing interest," lamented Manundu.

Echoing the secretary's sentiments was Aquinas High School's basketball head coach, Charles Ng'ang'a. He said the withdrawal of teams that were powerhouses in this sport during the late 80's and early 90's is a big blow to the development of the game.

"This is worrying. Where will the national team get new players from, if some schools have decided to do away with basketball in their calendar? This clearly makes individual talent to go to waste," said Ng'ang'a.

Of the 38 schools which participated in last year's qualifiers six have opted out.

Eight matches will be played on Thursday as city schools launch their preparation for the national games set for Central Province in April. Nairobi schools will be trying to recapture the national trophy that has eluded them for quite some time. Maseno School are the current champions

Divided into eight pools

The fixtures released by the NSSSA basketball secretary indicate that 32 schools have been divided into eight pools of four teams each.

The first round matches that started on Monday are scheduled to run until February 25. The second round duels that will involve 12 teams are planned to start from February 28 to March 6. The quarter-finals are set for March 8, semi-finals on March 29, while the play-offs and final would be held on March 29. Winners of the Nairobi tournament represent the province during the nationals from April 7 to 13.

Manundu said venues for the quarter-finals, semi-finals and the final will be neutral and the participating teams shall be notified at a later date. "Venues for knockout matches will be such that none of the qualifying teams will enjoy home advantage," he said.

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?