THE Basketball Union of Zimbabwe (BUZ) has invited Zambian clubs to participate in the Bob@90 basketball tournament to be held in Harare next week.
The Bob@90 basketball tournament is meant to celebrate the birthday of President Robert Mugabe and the organisers have offered to meet full board and lodging costs for the guest teams.
Zambia Basketball Association (ZBA) acting general secretary Mwembe Kaona said this in a statement yesterday that tournament will be a good pre-season warm up opportunity for the local teams.
"So far two Lusaka-based clubs Matero Magic and LCC Looters have expressed keen interest in taking up the invitation while the Copperbelt clubs are yet to state their position on the invitation," he saidKaona said the ZBA and BUZ have enjoyed cordial relations over the years adding that the invitation was one of the many exchanges that take place between the two countries in terms of basketball.He further said the tournament will afford local coaches a chance to expose young players to International basketball.And tournament director, Tendai Zhakata, told The Herald in Harare that BUZ extended an invitation to Matero Magic, University of Zambia, Looters and Shells to come and add a foreign flavour at this year's event.
"I am happy to announce that we have got a response from Matero Magic, University of Zambia and Looters who are sending their men's teams while Shells will send the women. This is the first time we are having international teams in this basketball tournament," said Zhakata.
Meanwhile, ZBA vice president south Conrad Musonda has observed that poor basketball infrastructure was hampering the development of the sport in the country.The ZBA has launched an ambitious program aimed at tapping the basketball talent from all parts of the country.Musonda said the association will engage Members of Parliament (MPs) to spear head mobilisation of funds to upgrade existing basketball infrastructures in their respective constituencies.
"We have realised that one of the challenges that are hindering progress of the development of basketball on the grassroots is poor infrastructure and we know that in every constituency, there is a basketball court. So we want to ensure that MPs take a leading role in seeing to it that courts in their respective areas are improved. It only costs about K15, 000 to refurbish a single court," he said.