12 September 2008

RWANDA : APR, Marine for Regional Club Championships

by Julius Mbaraga

This year, Rwanda will have the luxury of fielding two clubs at the forthcoming Zone VI Club championships.

National league champions Marine and Zone VI defending champions APR will hoist the Rwandan flag at the nine-day tournament which unfolds on October 28.
APR won last year's edition which was held in Kigali after seeing off Kenya's Kenya Commercial Bank.
This year, the championship will be staged in Ethiopia and all participating clubs are expected to cater for all their expenses.
"In principal, the clubs are expected to cater for all the expenses but the norm here is that the Sports Ministry foots the transport costs," the president of the local basketball governing body (Ferwaba) Fidele Rutagarama said.
In the same vein, the Marine president Colonel Firmin Bayingana remains confident that the club will raise the required funds to travel to Ethiopia.
"We are representing the country in an international event so we will seek support from government and other corporate bodies.
"We intend to solicit for money from various companies to help us cater for accommodation and upkeep while in Ethiopia," Bayingana said.
Marine came to the fore in 2005 when they finished 3rd in their debut season. They also finished third the following season. But last year, they lifted their first league title after seeing off favorites CSK A 3-0 in the play-off series final.
After being crowned Zone VI champions, APR received a lot of applauds from the locals because it was the first time in the history of the championships that a Rwandan club had won the event.

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