15 June 2013

UGANDA : Highflying City Oilers Take On UCU Canons

In what promises to be a mouthwatering encounter in the Airtel basketball league, unbeaten UCU Canons take on highflying topflight newcomers City Oilers at Lugogo arena, writes Felix Eupal.
The last time two sides met, Oilers prevailed in the final of the UCU Invitational tournament two months ago. However, that was a pre-season tournament and both sides were still regrouping ahead of the new season.
Since then, the Canons have enjoyed a fairytale start to the season; they have won all their five league games with an average of 65.2 points scored and letting in 49.9 per game. The Mukono-based side currently sits third but have two games in hand on leaders Dmark Power. As for the Oilers, they have already sent enough quivers down people's spines with wins over record champions Galaxy Falcons and Miracle Angels.
They lie fifth on the table with three wins from four outings and have scored 391 points and conceded 258. That's an average of 78.2 points scored and 51.2 conceded per game. The stats suggest they are better offensively and defensively than the Canons. So, while their debut season was supposed to be an orientation process, the Oilers have proven they have what it takes to match the big boys.
A win over Canons will go a long way to strengthen their credentials.
However, Oilers coach Many Juruni isn't letting that early form carry him away: "The win over them [Canons] was a pre-season thing and each team was just getting ready," he says. "Canons are a balanced squad. So, it's not going to be an easy game."
Not surprisingly, Canons head coach Nick Natuhereza concurs with Juruni that it's going to be a hard game even though he believes Canons have a slight advantage: "Their back court is not as good; especially the players that come off the bench," he says. "But that doesn't mean they are not good enough to beat us."
The Oilers will be without power forward Ramadan Arou, who is out of the country for family reasons. That will be a big blow because Arou is a workhorse in the paint, cleans up the boards while at the same time effective on offence.

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