09 April 2012

UGANDA : Kigali Returns to Inter-Cities Basketball Championship

After nine years of absence at the annual East and Central Africa inter-cities basketball championships, Kigali city hopes to make a sturdy return at this year's edition in Kampala due April 24-28.
At a meet that has attracted over 30 teams from across the region, the Kigali men's side is expected to be among the underdogs but from the camp which has been preparing for the past two weeks, confidence is in the air.
Kigali's head coach Cliff Owuor agrees that this tournament will be tough and very challenging but considering his attendance of last year's edition in Nairobi, he believes that he is preparing his team to overcome this hurdle.
"I watched last year's semi-finals and finals where I was a guest and am no man to be naïve at tournaments away from home so together with the boys we are working hard," revealed Owuor.
Owuor disclosed that after winning last December's EAC games hosted in Kigali, the Kicukiro side which he coached was promised more support after it defeated teams from Nairobi and Juba.
On his provincial team list are the usual suspects from APR Deo Nkurikiyimana, Igor Mugisha, Kami Kabange, Bienvenue Ngandu, Presta Malemba, Abidanny Bisanukuri, Theotime Mulihira as well as Espoir's Aristide Mugabe and Jean Luc Habineza.
Kigali Basketball Club (KBC's) Cedric 'Gadaffi' Sinarinzi together with CSKA's Aboubakar Barame and Lionel Hakizimana are also part of the 16-man squad that trains intensively thrice a week at the Petit stadium, Amahoro under the close supervision of Owuor.
According to Owuor, the final team will be named after the mourning period basing on fitness, skill level, ability to work as a team and consistency as some of the attributes that describe a winning team.
Owuor admits that his side is the underdog at this event but that does not throw them completely out of contention for the top prize.
Basing on the fact that the players on his team right now are national team players and have played for their clubs at the annual Zone V club championships several times, will be a point to fall back to.
"This will not be the first time that these players are featuring in a regional tournament so I believe that with that experience that they have acquired over the years, they can go on and perform extremely well in Kampala," added a confident Owuor.
This year's tournament has attracted teams from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, South Sudan and hosts Uganda. The competition will feature both men and women's teams. Last year's edition was clinched by teams from Nairobi in both categories.
According to the Kampala City Council Authority (KCCA) team manager also among the event organizers, Joy Olinga everything is set for the tournament.

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