16 August 2013

UGANDA : Plucky KIU test for Warriors in League

KIU Titans are never too far away from beating the so-called title contenders in the Airtel National Basketball League. Often, they are close to winning.

It’s that killer instinct that coach Nimrod Kaboha has set out to find in the second round where KIU are fond of putting up their best displays ahead of the playoffs. They have already beaten Charging Rhino 62-35 following the resumption but it’s teams like Warriors, who they face today at the Lugogo MTN Arena, that can really test their mettle.
“Yes, you are right we must play better towards the end of games,” Kaboha admitted. The most costly of those poor finishes came in the 67-64 loss to Power.
On the flipside they held off play-off bound newcomers City Oilers 48-47 in a humdinger which was the first time the fifth-placed KIU managed to beat a team in the top four.

Kenyan Michael Makiadi missed a running lay-up with 11 seconds to play when Power led 65-64 and has arguably been their best defensive player.Makiadi underwent an operation after an abdominal problem and won’t play again this year. He is a big miss. Edwin Kateregga and Bol Akol have a huge challenge to step up.
There won’t be much of a honeymoon to find comfort in the role vacated by Makiadi. Veteran Henry Malinga is indisputably the best if not the greatest inside player this country has ever seen.
He is been outstanding in bits this season, including a 28-point display in the 91-65 rout of rivals Power that ended the latter’s unbeaten start to the season at 10 games.

Malinga was even able to carry that class (it’s not form) to the Fiba Africa Zone V Club Championships in Burundi with Warriors finishing a disappointing fourth. The champions have only lost twice in 11 games despite a rocky start to the season and coach Emmy Samanya must be looking to milk time out of recently signed Tanzanian Sylvain Yunzu.
In the early fixture, Ndejje University Angels could miss Steven Okias, Jonah Otim, Geoffrey Soro and Brian Odour for their game against eight-placed Rhino.

The quarter travelled to Nairobi for the East Military Games as part of the UPDF Tomahwaks contingent.

Today at Lugogo
M: Warriors vs. KIU (8.30pm)
M: Rhino vs. Ndejje (6.30pm)

Wednesday Results:
M: Miracle 44-81 City Oilers
W: Gladiators 46-70 Stormers

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