19 November 2015

UGANDA : Oilers look to press home advantage

Oilers will yet again rely on the class of Kami Kabange. Photo by Ismail Kezaala 

Posted  Wednesday, November 18   2015 at  02:00
City Oilers are in a position of extreme comfort. The two-time defending champions can even afford to be bullish or complacent, or both. Neither scenario would be catastrophic.
Today’s Game Two of the Pepsi-Fuba League playoff best-of-five semifinals series at YMCA court against Tiger Head Power is nothing more than just another game for Oilers.
Heavy with 15 successive victories over Power in all competitions, stretching back to 2013, Oilers must find new ways to motivate themselves against their 'favourite' side. Centre Kami Kabange knows how to.
Friday’s Game One 62-58 victory was on the back of a poor performance. “They are finished now,” warned Kabange, 22 points and 13 rebounds. “We are not going to play as badly again.”
That coach Mandy Juruni’s side can improve is a given. It’s something that should make Power fret following last year’s 4-0 sweep at the hands of the same opponent in the finals.
Coach Bernice Ankunda remains an optimist that this won’t end 3-0. “We just have to play hard,” Ankunda said. Even a 3-1 loss would look like an achievement for the five-time champions.
One adjustment Ankunda has to make is keeping ‘big men’ Michael Makiadi and Michael Kojo on the floor together longer to counter Kabange, Landry Ndikumana and Samuel Kalwanyi.
While Sudi Ulanga, 17 points in the series opener, is their primary scorer, point guard Abdullahi Ramadhan has to start to involve everyone else on offense. That one-pass offense is too shallow.
Defeat tonight and Power will almost be rendered helpless against being swept by an opponent they seem not to have clue on how to beat. Some fans were bold enough to carry some brooms during last year's final.
In the women’s series KCCA Leopards should take another step towards another final appearance after beating KIU Rangers 72-53 in Game One.
Power vs City Oilers, 8.30pm
KIU vs KCCA, 6.30pm


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