30 July 2009

KENYA : Eagles Wings ready to fly

Last year’s women’s basketball Premier League runners-up Eagle Wings hope to stamp their authority and wrestle the East and Central Africa Club Championships trophy from Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) as the regional event kicks off in Kampala on Monday.

Eagle Wings, who are yet to win the regional title, are optimistic of flooring their perennial rivals KPA.

KPA’s Millicent Onyango evades a tackle from Mennonites’ players in a past league tie. Eagle Wings and KPA head to Uganda for regional clubs’ tournament. Photo: Martin Mukangu
To prove just how well prepared they are for their maiden title chase, Eagle Wings walloped the Kenya College of Accountancy University 73-35 at Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium on Saturday in a Premier League encounter.

Eagle Wings won the first quarter with a massive 17-6 score before increasing the tempo in the second quarter, which they won 24-7.

After the break, the team won the last quarters 15-13 and 17-9 to carry the day.

"There is nothing that is going to stop us from winning the title. With a little of hard work, we are going to do it," said Eagle Wings player Evelyn Kedogo.

Kedogo was formerly with Kenya Railways and Sprite Storms before crossing over.

Stable form

Coach Thomas Smatts Olumbo, who confirmed his girls are in a stable form of mind and physique, said there are no worries since the team has no injuries.

"We are stepping up training at the Nairobi Railway Club and we will gauge our capacity with the Kenya College of Accountancy University (KCA-U) against whom we have a league match tomorrow (yesterday)," Olumbo had said earlier.

High expectations

Besides aiming to bag a slot to Benin this year, Olumbo said Eagle Wings have high expectations, including hopes of bagging the women’s Premier League title this year.

"Last year, KPA beat us with a basket and we are working on the mistakes we made. This year, beating us will not be easy as such," he said.

Olumbo was set to name his final squad on Saturday, after they played KCA-U in a league tie at Nyayo National Stadium. The team leaves for Kampala tonight.

Among the players the squad will rely on to bag the title include Lillian Achieng who has captained the women’s national team since 1998, besides representing the country in two editions of the All Africa Games.

Rebecca Sarange, Eunice Ouma and Anastacia Njeri all who have also had a stint with the national team, will champion Eagle Wings’ campaign for a maiden regional title.

The team was formed in 2003 as a promotional club but later got a foothold in the league in 2007 where it finished third. The same year, the team got a major boost when players from the defunct Telekom, who had won the league, crossed over.

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