13 September 2006

KENYA : Battle for the play-offs down to just four teams


The battle for the 2006 men’s basketball Premier League play-offs semi-finals was reduced to four teams after critical return leg matches at Nairobi’s Nyayo National Stadium over the weekend.

They are defending champions Ulinzi Warriors, Co-operative Bank of Kenya, Tigers of the United States International University of Africa and Kenya Commercial Bank Lions.

Ulinzi Warriors, remain favourites to finish at the top with an unbeaten record following their 20-0 walk-over against underdogs Nakuru Club.

After keeping their unbeaten run intact from14 outings the Warriors head the nine-team table standings with 28 points. The soldiers have won all their 14 matches. KCB Lions, who had no match at the weekend, are tipped to clinch second spot. Lions have garnered 20 points from nine wins, two losses and one forfeiture against rivals Ulinzi.

Co-op Bank have harvested 24 points after winning 10 matches and losing four. USIU-A Tigers entered the play-offs race after registering a morale boosting 70-64 win over their fellow students, University of Nairobi’s Terrorists.

Are automatically out

Five remaining teams in the nine-team competition are automatically out of the running for this year’s post-season play-offs. They are: Kenyatta University Pirates with 17 points, Terrorists (17), Coast Youth Club (14), International Christian Centre (13) and Nakuru Club (13).

In the women’s section, Telkom and Sprite Storms assured themselves places in the play-offs after winning their second leg matches over the weekend. Telkom harvested the maximum two points when they beat Flames of the USIU-A 79-53.

As a result, Sprite Storms and Telkom are locked in the first position on the seven-team standings with 19 points each. They have played 11 matches, won eight and lost three.

Reigning champions Kenya Ports Authority seem to be having no opposition in their bid to grab the first position.

The dock women, have maintained their seven match unbeaten record with 14 points. Flames, who dropped one point after going down 79-53 to Telkom and Yana Club, have also collected 14 points each. Flames and Yana will be battling it out for fourth spot to qualify for the post-season play-offs.

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