07 March 2013

TANZANIA : 10 countries for Dar basketball tourney

Dar es Salaam. Ten countries have confirmed to feature in the Zone Five basketball tournament scheduled to take place here next year.
The countries are Egypt, Burundi, Djibouti, Sudan, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Eritrea, Kenya, Uganda and the hosts, Tanzania according to Tanzania Basketball Federation (TBF) vice president, Phares Magesa.
Magesa said the tournament will take place at the National Indoor Stadium and Don Bosco courts from January 20 to 27 and the body is racing against time to raise funds.
He said they need Sh200 million to facilitate the tournament, which is in the international basketball calendar and that it was an honour for Tanzania to host it. Magesa said they are discussing with various companies in a bid to seal sponsorship for the event. (Majuto Omary)
Tanzania Breweries Limited (TBL) and Coca-Cola are among the companies the federation banks on for support.
“We are now looking sponsors to support the tournament. TBL alone cannot dish out all the money needed stage the tournament,    
“We need support from other institutions in order to make the event a grand success,” said Magesa.    
He said the national team has started off-camp training and they have set the bar high.
Earlier, the tournament was planned to tip off today and run through December 15, but organisers have decided to push it back due to what they termed “unavoidable” reasons.    
He said a team of four local coaches has already selected talented players now forming the men and women national sides that will be under the tutelage of newly hired American coach Albert Sokaitis.
 Magesa named the local coaches as Everist Mapunda (Pazi), Leonard Kwale (ABC), Agnella Semwaiko (Don Bosco Lioness) and Bahati Mgunda (Vijana).
He said they have called in the services of a coach from the US, the world’s best basketball playing nation, in efforts to turn around Tanzania’s basketball fortunes.    
However, it remains to be seen whether the Tanzanian teams will perform well taking into account their yesteryear showing.

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