25 October 2013

RWANDA : Clash of egos as Espoir, APR meet in Playoffs


APR coach Cliff Owuor has his hands full against the champions.
Rusizi    vs    KBC            
Espoir    vs    APR

Sat: Game Two
Espoir    vs    APR
Rusizi    vs    KBC

Sun: Game Three
Espoir    vs    APR
Rusizi    vs    KBC

Espoir head coach Jean Buhufite is confident his team will beat archrivals APR in the best of three basketball league Playoffs semi-finals, which gets underway today with game one at Amahoro indoor stadium.
Bahufite, fresh from guiding Espoir team to the regular season title two weeks ago, is eager to add the Playoffs trophy to his collection like he did last season in an unbeaten record.
The Playoffs draw pitted two archrivals Espoir and APR, setting a stage for the clash of egos. It also means one of the two teams won’t be in the finals against either Kigali Basketball Club or Rusizi, who meet in the other semi-final.
Espoir became the first team to win the regular season league title with an unbeaten record for two consecutive seasons. They finished with 26 points, five ahead of second-placed KBC while Rusizi and APR finished third and fourth with 20 and 17 points respectively.
“We need the Playoffs title, it means a lot to us, this team is hungry for more success and we will go into game one will purpose of winning,” Bahufite told Tim
He added, “I am confident my players can do more, we will continue to work hard and win all our games. We still need to keep our unbeaten record over the two seasons.”
Last season, Bahufite’s team beat APR 3-0 in the best of five Playoffs finals to seal a league and Playoffs double.
Meanwhile, KBC are targeting a place in the Playoffs finals and possibly the title after failing to win the regular season league title. The 2011 league champions will faceoff with Risizi in the best of three semi-finals.
“We are ready for today’s clash against Rusizi, all my players are well prepared both physically and mentally,” KBC head coach Cyrille Kalima told Times Sport.
He however, admitted, “Espoir will be the team to pay great attention to.”  KBC duo of brothers Mike and Patrick Buzangu will be pivotal for tonight’s tie against Rusizi.

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