30 June 2013

KENYA : Co-op Bank beat Aviation go top of league

  • Co-operative Bank won the first three quarters enroute to a 49-41 win over Nairobi Aviation College in a national classic league match played on Saturday in Nairobi. 19-12 and 10-8 wins in the first two quarters saw the bankers take a 29-20 lead to the breather.
    They repeated the same performance in the third quarter winning 10-9 before Aviation won the consolation fourth quarter 12-10.
    The win takes Co-op Bank top of the log on eighteen points, one ahead of Thunder. Joseph Khaemba top scored for the bankers with 11 points while Salim Ali added 8. Franklin Delano and Job Byron scored 9 points each for Aviation.
    University of Nairobi’s Terrorist registered the second win of the season with a 65-56 win over a disorganized Blazers side.
    Most of the Blazers’ key players including Abel Nson arrived for the match late after kickoff which affected their playing.
    Terror won the first quarter 12-10 and Blazers second 16-15 to give the students a slim one point lead at halftime. Blazers overpowered the students in the third quarter winning 17-8 but Terror replied with equal measure in the fourth quarter to win 30-13.
    Brian Namulata scored 14 points for Terror while Captain Hillary Kubai had 13. Ronnie Akedi was Blazers’ top scorer with 14 points. United States International University- Africa, USIU-A, registered a vital away win in the women premier after beating Western Delight 79-31 in Kakamega.
    Hilda Indasi had 20 points for the visitors with Linda Mfuchi contributing 14.
    Peninah Wekesa scored 10 points for Delight. USIU won all the quarters 11-6, 17-14, 32-6 and 19-5 respectively. Kwale-based NYTA-Shimba also reaped maximum points from their tour of Nairobi with a 61-37 win over Kenyatta University Oryx.
    Taundencia Peter scored 23 points for Shimba with Betty Kananu notching 17 for Oryx. The first quarter was won by Oryx 10-7 while Shimba carried home the remaining quarters 14-7, 24-8 and 16-12 in that order.
    In division one, Kenyatta University Pirates failed to sustain their fighting spirit to lose 62-53 against Zetech College in a highly competitive match. Trailblazers beat Umoja 68-61 in the other match.
    Collated Results: Trailblazers 68 Umoja 61, KU Oryx 37 NYTA-Shimba 61, Zetech College 62 KU Pirates 53, Terror 65 Blazers 56, Western Delight 31 USIU Flames 79, Co-op Bank 49 Nairobi Aviation College 41. By Francis Marangu

    NIGERIA : NBBF : NBBF opens Afrobasket Women camp

    The Nigeria Basketball Federation, NBBF has endorsed the proposal of the women’s national team coaching staff to open a trial camp to select home-based players for the Afrobasket 2013 team.
    Fifteen players from the Zenith League have been invited to the trials which will take place at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium in Lagos from June 30 to July 6, 2013.

    The invited players are: Nkechi Akashili, Magdalene Ukato, Amaka Nwakamma, Atosu Upe,Grace Okonkwo, Evelyn Akhator, Nkem Akarawe, NkoyoGeorge,Theresa Samuel, Lillian Okwadi, Nana Sule, Regina Lornumbe, Lina Ubol Dong, Funmi Ojelabi and Cioma Udeaja.
    The shortlisted players are from seven league teams namely, First Deepwater, Dolphins, First Bank, Sunshine Angels, FCT Angels, Plateau Rocks and Nigeria Customs.

    Head coach Scott Nnaji will run the camp to be assisted by coaches, Lateef Erinfolami, Aderemi Adewunmi and Emmanue Odah.At the end of the exercise, the players to join the foreign-based players in a closed camp in Abuja in July will be selected.

    UGANDA : Gladiators aim to upset KCCA Leopards

    Gladiators aim to upset KCCA Leopards

    KCCA Leopards’ Hilda Naigaga (right) battles for the ball with Stella Nikuze of Gladiators in the women’s Airtel National Basketball League at Lugogo last month.
     By Vision Reporter
    Airtel National Basketball League
    Victoria University v Warriors
    Vegetarian v Ndejje
    Gladiators v KCCA

    Nabisunsa v A1 Challenge
    KAMPALA Capital City Authority (KCCA) Leopards will continue their Airtel National Basketball League title pursuit with a game against Gladiators today.
    The team, seeking to retain the women’s crown, will be in action at the YMCA courts Wandegeya.
    KCCA’s experience will again be an important factor in today’s show like in previous games in the Federation of Uganda Basketball Association (FUBA) annual contest so far.
    The team will look to a number of their seasoned players including Flavia Oketcho and Monica Siima as they seek to cement their title drive.
    They face the less experienced Gladiators. The teams are meeting for the second time this season. KCCA defeated their rivals 80-26 in the first round game held last month.
    They will play a third game given that there are fewer teams in the women’s event (8) than in the men’s category (12).
    The men’s event has first and second round games to determine the playoff qualifiers due later in the year.
    At the same time, Isaac Afidra’s Power defeated Titans 67-64 in the men’s event on Friday.
    In the other game of the day, Rangers beat Sparks 46-33 in the women’s event

    29 June 2013

    ZAMBIA : National championship finally!!!

    Finally the lock and chains at NASDEC will be cut. Coaches, Players, Officials, Fans and Journalist will walk into an Arena that was "locked down" by Teams led by a courageous group of men and women. The people had again proved that real power rests in them. It's the dawn of a new era. One in which all involved would be called to higher levels of accountability. And what a way to end the lockout. Southern Region League Champions Matero Magic come face to face with their rivals, the University of Zambia Pacers in Game 3 of the National Championship tonight. With the series tied at 1 all, the scene is set for what will be an explosive encounter between 2 evenly matched teams but with different Basketball styles. With a blend of youth and experience that includes over 8 National Championship Titles and many individual accolades, the Magicians of Matero are by far one of the most dangerous sides to face on any day. Yet their opponents, with 3 finals ...appearances, 1 championship and arguably the country's most potent backcourt, have established themselves as perennial championship contenders and are no pushovers. As if this were not enough, tomorrows visit to the Arena will start with Pacers B taking on Magic B in a deciding game 5 with the series tied at 2 all. The rivalry between the two clubs has already been passed on to their juniors and is likely to last for many years to come. In the Femine League, Defending National Champions UNZA Honeys might have thought they had only a game to play after their late but narrow win in Game 2 that put the series at 2-0. The Shells were having non of it though. In 24hours, they tied the series with fine basketball and great instincts. These rivals will lock horns in a game 5 that promises to be the highlight of Saturday afternoon. Games between these two teams have been rather close in the last 3 seasons. Make a date. Tell your neighbor and pull a friend to Nasdec this weekend and you will have no regrets.

    BY Cuthbert Kondwelani Tembo

    28 June 2013

    KENYA : KBF Classic League weekend fixtures


     Updated on 28/06/13  |    By BRIAN AYIEKO
    The Kenya Basketball Federation Classic weekend will resume this weekend and it will see 2012 runners up in the ladies category USIU Flames travel to Kakamega where they will face Western Delight at the Kakamega Police Canteen.
    In Nairobi Defending Champions Co-op Bank will be up against Nairobi Avaition on Saturday at the Nyayo Gymnasium while on Sunday USIU Tigers will be up against UoN Terrorits from 3 pm at the same venue.
    The collated fixtures are as follows:
     Kakamega (Saturday)
    • 10.00AM    Western delight      vs    USIU Flames
    Saturday (Nyayo Gym)
    • 9.00 AM     Trailblazers    vs    Umoja
    • 10.30 am    KU Oryx     vs    NYTA Shimba
    • Noon            Zetech     vs    KU Pirates
    • 1.30 pm      Terror   vs     Blazers
    • 3.00 pm      Mennonites   vs   Ulinzi
    • 4.30 pm     Co-op Bank   vs   Nairobi Aviation
    SUNDAY  30TH
    • 9.00 am     World hope   vs   equity bank
    • 10.30 am   Eagle wings   vs   NYTA Shimba
    • Noon     Trailblazers   vs   K.A.A
    • 2.00 pm    Terror     vs     USIU Tigers
    • 4.00 pm    Lions   vs   Nakuru club

    UGANDA : Power turn guns on Titans

    Power turn guns on Titans
    Former Nkumba Marines and Falcons guard Julius Lutwama (R) is yet to gel with KIU Titans, just like other new signings. Photo by Ismail Kezaala.  
    By Ismail Dhakaba Kigongo

    Posted  Friday, June 28  2013 at  00:00
    In Summary
    It’s been another season of struggles for KIU as their roster featuring new acquisitions like Chris Kyebambe (Miracle), Edwin Kateregga and Julius Lutwama (both Falcons), has not clicked.
    Today at Lugogo
    Men: KIU vs. Power
    Women: KIU vs. Mak Sparks

    No team in the Airtel National Basketball League probably changes their roster with the same frequency that KIU Titans have managed in recent years.
    However, they have never really struck the right chords as they still await a maiden title, let alone a first appearance in the finals. This being a university side, some of the alterations are rather understandable.
    Their opposition tonight at the Lugogo MTN Arena – Dmark Power – is the direct opposite. Stability is their key strength in recent times and in Isaac Afidra they have a player who has been there for over a decade.
    The bulk of this Power side has been together since their 2008 championship-winning season. “In an amateur league, it’s hard to keep the same players together but it’s important to do so,” Power’s Joseph Ikong said. After their disappointing play-off quarterfinal exit last year to UCU Canons, Power have responded by winning eight in a row to start the season. They have even been able to limit the minutes of their ‘stars’ in the ‘smaller’ games as Ikong sat out the 86-59 win against Charging Rhino on Sunday.
       Reigning MVP Norman Blick, who rejoined from Warriors, and two-time MVP Ben Komakech have also been accorded some rest. KIU Titans on the other hand can’t afford that luxury.
        Afidra, whose game-high 27 and picked 12 rebounds, proved too much for Rhino is getting the most minutes as coach Bernes Ankunda pushes him to return to his MVP form of 2011.
    KIU can ill afford that luxury having failed to beat a playoff-bound team thus far having lost to Warriors and UCU Canons.
    Their final fixtures of the first round include Power, City Oilers and Falcons, the latter three all expected to push for the title.                               
    It’s been another season of struggle for KIU as their new roster following the acquisitions of Edwin Kateregga and Julius Lutwama (both Falcons), Chris Kyebambe (Miracle Eagles) has failed to click.


    Namibia: Second Basketball High-Performance Centre Opens

    The Namibian Basketball Federation in Walvis Bay opened its second high performance center on 21 June. Under guidance of coach Sylvester Goraseb and Namibian Basketball Federation's German expert Frank Albin, a selected group of 12 young talents started working on their fundamentals. During the following weeks, the players and local coaches are supposed to follow the practice plan given by Namibia Basketball Federation which shall guarantee that all selected players achieve a minimum skill level. The first high-performance centre was established in April in Tsumeb and the players have been making a lot of progress since then.
    Soon after its opening, the high-performance centre in Walvis Bay hosted a mini basketball event in honour of the Olympic Day. Around 50 players, coaches and teachers from various primary schools took part. The boys and girls learned the basics of dribbling, passing and shooting; harnessing their new horned skills in various contests and games.
    Through the support of the German Federal Foreign Office and the German Olympic Sports Confederation, Namibia Basketbal Federation handed over 30 basketballs to the Erongo Basketball Association (10 balls for the high-performance center and 20 balls for the mini basketball program). Other equipment like pumps, whistles, a scoreboard and a shot clock were handed over too.

    27 June 2013

    Nigeria: Ugboaja Tasks NBBF On Exposure of Home-Based Players

    Ex-D'Tigers player Ejike Ugboaja, who represented Nigeria at the London 2012 Olympics, yesterday charged the Nigerian Basketball Federation (NBBF) to look inwards in selecting players for international tournaments.
    Ugboaja, a former player with Union Bank of Lagos and a 2006 NBA draft with Cleveland Cavaliers in the U.S., disclosed this in a chat in Lagos.
    He said that the NBBF should focus more attention on players in the national league, rather than giving preference to professional players. "The NBBF is not allowing home-based players to develop as there is too much reliance on foreign professionals.
    "There is so much reliance on foreign players for international competitions and this is killing the game at home.
    "The worst part of it is that most of these Nigerian foreign players were not even familiar with the Nigeria terrain.
    "They know they have Nigerian parents but they have never seen or come home to their fatherland because they were born and raised overseas," he said.
    According to Ugboaja, once the NBBF sees a Nigerian doing well overseas, the federation goes over to meet him and try to persuade him to come and play for the country.
    "It is so appalling when the league board goes searching for foreign professionals when they can develop home-based players by engaging them in friendly and serious competitions at home," he said.
    Ugboaja suggested that players in the DStv/League should be respected and allowed to feature at the continental level, because they understand the physical nature of continental competitions.
    According to him, he has since 2010 been running a foundation in Abuja for kids who want to pursue a career in basketball or American Football in the U.S.
    The proprietor said that 400 participants registered with the foundation, this year. NAN

    Rwanda: Hoops Team to Train in Egypt, Senegal

    The senior national basketball team will train in Egypt for one week ahead of this year's 27th African basketball championships scheduled for August 20-31 in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.
    The team will depart on August 1 and will train in Egypt before proceeding to Senegal to take part in a two-day tournament, which will be organised by Senegalese Basketball Federation as part of their preparations for the Afro-basket meet.
    "We have planned for a one-week training camp in Egypt and also compete in the Senegal tournament, which will come a week before the African Cup, it is good that the team will have enough warm-up matches," said Rwanda Basketball Federation president Desire Mugwiza.
    He added, "All that teams that will be in the Afro-basket competition, are invited (for the Senegal tournament) and for us we are ready because we need more competition before taking part in Africa's biggest tournament."
    Meanwhile, the team, which is made up of only locally-based players, lost their second game in the Mozambique 38th independence anniversary tournament.
    Rwanda lost to hosts Mozambique 70-67 in the first game on Monday before losing the second game 70-57 on Tuesday. The third and final game was scheduled for Wednesday night in Maputo.
    At the Afro-basket championships, Rwanda is drawn in Group C along with Morocco, debutants Burkina Faso and defending champions Tunisia.
    Rwanda will open her campaign against Burkina Faso on August 21, face Morocco two days later, before winding up her quest against Tunisia on August 25.

    Gambia: Basketball Association Lines Up Series of Activities

    The Gambia Basketball Association, in partnership with The United States Peace Corps, is currently hosting the Take Charge Senior Secondary School Basketball Programme.
    Daddy Jobe, Gambia High, Glory Baptist, Kotu, Methodist Academy, Muslim High, and July 22nd Academy are the senior secondary schools participating in the activities. The event, which combines fundamental clinics and interschool matches with educational sessions focusing on drug and alcohol abuse, HIV/AIDS, and teenage pregnancy, has met for the previous two weekends at the Independence Stadium in Bakau. The Gambia Family Planning Association and the Nova Scotia Gambia Association are educating the students. Players from the newly revitalised Gambian national team are working with the teams and their coaches. Cheerleaders are also training to represent the newly formed national squad and distribute the positive messages supported by this programme.
    An official training is also ongoing with the goal of creating more qualified referees to support the GBA or SSS leagues which may be developed in the future. On 28, 29 and 30 June the event will be offering free HIV/AIDS testing to members of the community. The goal is to test 550 individuals in this period. Testing will take place on Friday 28 June at the American Corner between the hours of 11:00am and 2:00pm; on Saturday 29 June at the Independence Stadium in Bakau from 11:00am to 2:00pm; and on Sunday 30 June at the Independence Stadium in Bakau from 4:00pm to 8:00pm. The federation is calling on members of the public to attend the event meant for the betterment of the community and the development of youth and sport in The Gambia.
    This weekend GBA schedules shall include cheerleading performances, music, free HIV/AIDS testing and presentation of trophies and prizes.
    Saturday 28 June 2013
    Senior Secondary Basketball Semi-final
    Girls: 10:00am
    Boys: 5:00pm
    Venue: Independence Stadium
    GBA knockout finals and crowning of league winners
    3rd Place: Wallidan vs. Sport House 4:30pm
    Finals - Female: GAF vs. Saints 6:00pm
    Finals - Male: YMCA vs. Serrekunda West 7:30pm
    Sunday 29 June 2013
    Senior Secondary Schools - Girls Finals: 4:30pm
    Senior Secondary Schools - Boys Finals: 6:00pm
    National Team Exhibition Game: 8:00pm
    Venue: Independence Stadium

    Uganda: Canons Eye Ninth Straight Victory

    UCU Canons, riding on their cohesiveness build over a couple of years, are well placed to win the National Basketball League for the first time.
    The side that has won all their eight games in the Airtel sponsored league, hope to go a step better against Charging Rhinos, who are in eighth position.
    The match is due at YMCA court, Wandegeya today.
    UCU strengthened their team with the recruitment of Syrus Kiviiri before the new season rolled off.
    The move has paid off as Kiviiri's combination with Sudi Ulanga has elevated them to the level of unstoppable shooters.
    The two are the league's best partners now and greatly account for the team's unbeaten run.
    Elsewhere, in the other game, last year's finalists and currently sixth placed positioned Galaxy Falcons will take on Nkumba Marines in ninth place. The game will also be held at the YMCA courts.
    Airtel National Basketball League
    Rhinos v UCU Canons 6:30pm
    Falcons v Marines 8:30pm

    Tunisia: M.G. Mersin 2013/Basketball (men's) - Tunisia Wins Bronze Medal

    Mersin, Turkey — Tunisia's national basketball team won a bronze medalat the 2013 Mediterranean Games men's basketball tournament after beating Macedonia's 63-58 at a placement match on Tuesday in Mersin,Turkey.
    Salah Mejri (17 points) and Makram ben Romdhane (15points) were Tunisia's best scorers at this game.

    26 June 2013

    UGANDA : Power in good nick ahead of UCU showdown

    It remains very important for both DMark Power and UCU Canons to take it a game at time even if the two have already set the tone in the Airtel National Basketball League.
    July 12 could be significant in firing the first shot in terms of title ambitions as the two will meet at the Lugogo MTN Arena in a repeat of last year’s quarterfinal clash which UCU won 2-1.
    It’s looking very likely that they will get to that date unbeaten.
    Power, like UCU two days prior when they beat Falcons 101-91, continued their perfect start, with an 86-59 win over Charging Rhino on Sunday. Former MVP Isaac Afidra scored a game-high 27 and picked 12 rebounds, Norman Blick added 15, Paul Odong and Ben Komakech contributed 10 each, the latter also committing 10 turnovers.This was rather an expected result against a Rhino side that is almost bound to spend the season fighting relegation. However, before Power look too far ahead, they face plucky KIU Titans on Friday.
    “We should share the ball and not let teams get too comfortable with half-court basketball,” Blick, the reigning MVP having rejoined Power from champions Warriors, said. UCU have to play Rhino and Nkumba Marines over the next fortnight. The perennial semifinalists should brush aside those two easily.

    Thereafter, UCU will need to raise their game like they did for victories against the other four semifinal contenders in KIU, Warriors, City Oilers and Falcons.
    M: Power 86-59 Rhino
    M: Heaters 51-70 City Oilers
    M: Vegetarian 58-83 Warriors
    W: KCCA 87-27 Nabisunsa
    W: UCU 60-52 A1 Challenge  

    NIGERIA : D'Tigers Off to China for Stankovich Cup

    Nigeria's national senoir men's basketball team, D'Tigers have jetted out of the shores of Nigeria to begin in earnest their preparations for the Afrobasket 2013 championship scheduled to hold in Cote d'Ivoire in August. They departed for Lanzhou and Guangzhou, China to open their international preparation for the African championship in the Stankovich Cup tournament which begins from June 27 to July 10. It will be a full house between the local and foreign based players.
    The home-based players and coaching staff left Lagos yesterday afternoon on Qatar airlines via Doha while their United States-based colleagues departed the Los Angeles international airport on an Air China flight via Beijing.
    They will begin preparation with a game against Germany on Thursday 27th and subsequently square-off against Argentina, Puerto Rico, China and Australia in the round-robin contest. The first leg ends in Lanzhou on July 1 while the second leg will commence in the southern commercial city of Guangzhou from July 3-10. The team will then proceed on recess to reconvene for the next phase of preparation in USA during the third week of July.

    Nigeria: Milo Basketball - St Augustine, St Jude Begin Title Defence July 2

    Five thousand seven hundred schools across the country have taken part in this year's Nestle Milo Secondary Schools Basketball champion-ships.
    This was disclosed in Lagos yesterday by the Managing Director and Chief Executive Nestle Nigeria Mr Dharnesh Gordhon while addressing the media ahead of the national finals billed for Lagos between 2nd - 6th July 2013 at the indoor sports hall of the national stadium, Surulere Lagos.
    St Augustine Seminary Ezzamgbo from Ebonyi State and St Jude Girls Secondary School Amarata of Bayelsa State are the defending champions in the Boys and Girls categories respectively.
    Gordhon said that the company was committed to grassroots sports development through the Nestle Milo basketball champion-ships among other sporting events sponsored by the company.
    He said, "Nestle focuses on sports to develop the champions spirit in children across the country.
    We firmly believe that sports is a wonderful platform for our youths to learn important values such as honesty, teamwork, fair play respect and adherance to rules."
    The national finals is a five-day basketball fiesta, with the conference champions displaying high energy, strong competitive spirit and determination to win."
    He also disclosed that this year's final will be played on a synthetic basketball floor which is eco-friendly and reputed to have better shock absorption and strong rate of ball deflection.

    25 June 2013

    Rwanda: Hoops Lose Mozambique Friendly

    The National Basketball team yesterday lost its first friendly tie against the Mozambique National Basketball team 70 to 63.
    The Hoops team is in Mozambique as part of their preparations for this year's Afro-Basketball tournament and Coach Moise Mutokambali and his assistant coach Jean Bahufite want to test their largely inexperienced side before the tournament, which will be hosted by Ivory Coast starts in August.
    Despite the loss, Mutokambali told Focus Sport via email that the team had coped well with their much experienced competitors and expects a much improved performance when they play again tomorrow.
    Hoops squad that is in Mozambique:
    Aboubakar Barame (CSK), Aristide Mugabe (Espoir, skipper), Placide Uwizeye (Espoir), Jean Luc Girincuti (UNR), Mouhamed Rafiki (APR), Patrice Twagirayezu (Ashiville Christian Academy-USA), Lionel Hakizimana (APR), Olivier Shyaka (KBC), Sunny Niyomugabo (APR), 10.Ngandu Bienvenu (ESP), Olivier Muhizi (Espoir), Kami Kabange (City Oil-Uganda).
    Other officials that went with the team are; head of delegation Jean Claude Mulingo, physiotherapist, Martin Uwimana and international referee Didier Shema Maboko.
    Mozambique 70-63 Rwanda

    Cape Verde: Afrobasket - Cape Verde Will Surpass 2007 Feat - Nwora

    Cape Verde's Nigerian-born basketball coach Alex Nwora says his side is looking beyond the quarter-final stage reached at the 2007, as they prepare for the 27th Africa Cup of Nations, Afrobasket in Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire.
    Cape Verde are drawn in Group C of the competition alongside ten-time champion Angola, Central Africa Republic, but Nwora believes the FIBA Africa Zone-II nation can surpass its quarter final feat of 2007.
    Nwora, who spoke to FIBA Africa.com, attributed the surge in Cape Verde basketball of late which saw them pick one of the two tickets in the zone ahead of Mali to hard work. Excerpt.
    "It feels great to see that all of the hard work paid off. I worked really hard with the Cape Verde Basketball Federation to see this to achievement. It would have been sad if we did not qualify for Abidjan 2013 Afrobasket as we were the host of the FIBA Africa Zone-II qualifier and had spent the last couple of years trying to raise the level of Cape Verde basketball.
    "Cape Verde will be ready for the summer 2013 Afrobasket. Our secret is hard work, dedication and commitment from the players to the coaching staff and the federation. There is no substitution for hard work. If all of our players are available and healthy, then we can compete with anybody in Africa," he said.

    24 June 2013

    KENYA : Ulinzi Warriors extinguish Blazers

    Ulinzi's William Ochieng
    Ulinzi's William Ochieng
     Updated on 24/06/13  |    By BRIAN AYIEKO

    Ulinzi Warriors were in a class of their own as they crushed Blazers 89-60 in the KBF Classic league on Sunday afternoon at the Nyayo Gymnasium.
    Renowned for their physical approach to the game Ulinzi was the better side of the day as they took all four quarters banking on first breaks and offensive rebounds. In the 1st quarter Blazers put pressure on the Defence Forces side getting 12 points while Eliud Nzioka’s side sunk in 14 points.
    In a high scoring 2nd quarter Ulinzi opened the gap with 32 points as Blazers got 23 points to put the half time scores at 46-35 in favor of the Warriors.
    In the last two quarters Ulinzi’s endurance was vital as they kept the match on a high tempo with Blazers failing to keep up. They took the 3rd quarter with 22 points against their opponents 11 points then sealed off the win with a 21-14 win in the last quarter.
    Blazers’ Abel Nson was the match’s top scorer with an impressive 30 points despite the loss while Collins Ouko and Bernard Mfutu gave Ulinzi 16 points each.
    In the only ladies played on Sunday at the Nyayo Gymnsium, Hilda Indasi guided USIU Flames with 29 points as they beat Co-op Bank 62-45. In Mombasa NYTA Shimba Hills saw off Kakamega based Western Delight 52-23 in a match that was played at KPA’s Makande Gymnasium.

    KENYA : Strathmore Blades slay Tigers in Varsity derby

    MichezoAfrika File Picture
     Updated on 23/06/13  |    By BRIAN AYIEKO

    Strathmore Blades emerged victorious in the University derby after they beat USIU-A Tigers 68-52 on Sunday evening at the Nyayo Gymnasium.
    The first quarter of the match saw Blades start on a blistering note in the first 6 minutes of play sinking in 9 points while Tigers failed to get any point. Tigers point guard Victor Bosire stepped up for the Thika Road based students getting a three point and eventually they rallied back into the match and this saw the quarter end at 14-13 in favor of Blades.
    The 2nd quarter was clearly where the match was decided after USIU could not crack Strathmore’s defence coupled by a series of turnovers and they lost the quarter miserably at 6 points against Blades 22 points. Their first point came from a Nevile Odhiambo free throw after 8 minutes of play and this put the half time scores at 36-19 in favor of the Madaraka based Strathmore.
    After the break USIU Coach David Maina led his charges to a man to man system of play and this worked out for the team as they managed to beat their opponents 13-10. The last quarter saw Tigers use the same strategy but after the fouling out of the inspirational Bosire the team lost psyche and they went down once more with 20 points while the winners of the day had 22 points.
    David Ogolla and Pascal Nabwana who was in superb form throughout the match were Blades top scorers with 11 points each while Victor Bosire and team captain Chris Mulumba had 12 and 10 points respectively.

    ZAMBIA : Fawaz Pledges to Revamp Basketball

    NEWLY elected Zambia Basketball Association (ZBA) president Shawki Fawaz has pledged to revamp the standards of the sport with emphasis to be placed on youth development programmes.
    Speaking in an interview at the weekend at the National Sports Development Centre (NASDEC), Fawaz, who is owner of Kitwe-based Lunga Bullets said he would ensure that there is accountability in the ZBA to attract sponsors and develop the sport.
    Fawaz said his executive committee would ensure that a good image was created for the ZBA to lure sponsors.
    "We need to create a face to attract the corporate world by ensuring that there is accountability so that the sponsors can feel comfortable putting their money into the sport. All the money that comes in should be accounted for," he said.
    He also urged his executive committee to serve the people who have entrusted confidence in them and that they should not go into leadership for selfish gain.
    "If someone is thinking of making money then that is a wrong attitude. We should all be here to serve the interest of the sport, seeing to it that we develop the game especially at the grassroots because that is where our players are," Fawaz said.
    He also expressed happiness that most of the members that were elected were part of his group and had been working in the background to come up with plans on how best the sport could be developed.
    Fawaz said a website was already up and running and called on basketball lovers to come forward and play the game whole heartedly.
    The Kitwe businessman is being deputised by two vice presidents Conrad Musonda (south) and Andrew Nyirenda (South) with the general secretary being Duncan Millimo, Pamela Shikaputo as national treasurer and Lovemore 'Porterfield' Sikaale as national coordinator.

    23 June 2013

    KENYA : Akinyi steers Storms past Mennonite, Thunder strikes Aviation

  • Suzanne Akinyi scored a game high of 35 points to help Sprite Storms beat struggling Mennonite 68-32 in a national classic league match played at the Nyayo National Stadium gymnasium on Saturday.
    Akinyi, formerly of NYTA-Shimba, single-handedly run the show for Storms in the match they were expected to win with a more convincing margin.
    The loss leaves Mennonite winless this season but the Edson Mugisha’s side will draw some positives from their display against the experienced opponents.
    So vital was Akinyi’s contribution in the match that she accounted for all the scores her side registered in the first quarter.
    She managed four baskets and two free throws. Tabitha Mutheu replied for Mennonite with two three-pointers with Viviane Akinyi and Bella Wangwe scoring a basket each to level the quarter at 10-10.
    Storms recovered from the early scare to win the second quarter 21-7 and take a 31-17 lead to the breather. By the close of the third quarter, Mennonite was completely frozen out losing 17-0 before succumbing to a 20-15 loss in the fourth quarter. Mutheu top scored for the losers with 8 points while Mary Wangui added 6.
    Kenya College of Accountancy- University (KCA-U), recorded their first win of the season after beating fellow strugglers Kenyatta University Oryx 36-34.
    It was a tight match that saw both teams keep a close check of each other denying any side the opportunity to open up a commanding lead. Oryx squandered a deserved 17-11 halftime lead to allow KCA stage a comeback in the second half and carry home maximum points.
     Betty Kananu had 19 points for Oryx while Rebecca Nkatha top scored for KCA with 17. In the men premier, Thunder came down from 14 points to beat Nairobi Aviation College 58-52 in an action packed encounter at the same venue.
    Ulinzi see off Nakuru 
    Aviation seemed destined for a comfortable win but lost stamina in the closing moments of the match. Thunder is now top of the log with 17 points one ahead of champions Co-operative Bank.
    Thunder had a slow start trailing the first quarter 15-9 but regained their strength to win the second 16-9 and enjoy a slim four point lead at halftime.
    They then conceded more baskets in the third quarter to lose 22-13 as Aviation took full control of the match. In the fourth quarter, Thunder regrouped to win 20-9.
    Their calculations were even made better with the ejection of Aviation’s key player Ben Oluoch on five fouls which seemed to weaken their game plan.
    Griffin Ligare had 26 points for Thunder and eight rebounds while Franklin Delano and Job Byron top scored for Aviation with 13 and 10 points respectively.
    Ulinzi Warriors reaped hugely from their tour of Rift Valley beating host Nakuru Club 58-41. Collins Ouko and Michael Kariuki top scored for Ulinzi and Nakuru respectively with 13 points apiece.
    The soldiers took an early 27-18 lead going to the breather after winning 19-7 and 18-11 in the first two quarters.
    Upon resumption, Nakuru struggled to win the third quarter 16-8 and cut the soldiers’ lead to just a point. Ulinzi run riot in the final quarter with a 13-7 win to ensure they return to Nairobi with maximum points.
    The win will boost their confidence as they prepare to face Blazers on Sunday in Nairobi. Umoja continued from where they left it last weekend with a slender 67-65 win over Kenyatta University Pirates in division one.
    Pirates were leading 31-25 at halftime and will remain to rue the missed chances especially in the second half.
    Their poor passing and lack of communication was clearly evident. Pirates won the first quarter 22-15 with Umoja winning the second 10-9. The third quarter went to Umoja 18-10 while the fourth ended in a tie of 24-24.
    With seven seconds remaining on the clock and scores reading 67-65 in favor of Umoja, the students had a chance to level and trigger extra time after Jackton Agunda was fouled by Rodgers Ombati.
    He, however, missed the resultant free throws. Eric Reuben scored 15 points for Umoja with Eric Etemesi adding 13.
    For Pirates, Douglas Momanyi top scored with 18 while Gilbert Obiero had 15. Little Prince beat World Hope 60-55 after leading 27-25 at halftime.
    Elvis Mwangi hit 19 points for Little Prince and Fidel Muga added 12. Maxwell Oduor and Augustine Mumila scored 13 and 12 points respectively for World Hope.
    Results: Storms 68 Mennonite 32, World Hope 55 Little Prince 60, Nakuru Club 41 Ulinzi 58, KU Oryx 34 KCA-U 36, Umoja 67 KU Pirates 65, Nairobi Aviation College 52 Thunder 58. By Francis Marangu

    UGANDA : UCU to face A1 Challenge

    UCU to face A1 Challenge
    UCU lady Canons’ Angella Namirimu (right) tries to go past Aisha Nakabuubi of KIU during a previous encounter.
    By Julius Senyimba
    Airtel National Basketball League
    Power v Rhinos
    Heaters v City Oilers
    Vegetarian v Warriors
    KCCA v Nabisunsa
    UCU v A1
    UCU 101 Falcons 91
    Ndejje 68 Miracle 45
    UGANDA Christian University (UCU) Lady Canons guard Maureen Amoding has said that the side will cope without Peace Proscovia in the Airtel National Basketball League today.
    UCU will take on A1 Challenge at YMCA courts in Wandegeya.
    “We are going to miss her services but with the depth we have, we can cope,” the 2010 women’s MVP Amoding, stated.
    “I am confident we shall do the job well because I trust my teammates and we are ready for our opponents.”
    Inspirational player Peace is with the She Cranes team taking part in the Africa Netball Championship in Malawi.
    UCU and A1 will meet after battling in the playoffs last season.
    At that time, Canons registered a 3-0 series win over their rivals in the quarter finals. Amoding will link up with the team’s players like Angella Namirimu, Francis Nabulobi and Putity Odhiambo.
    A1 Challenge will look Liz Bazira, Vicky Ntale and Sylvia Nakazibwe.UCU are in second position while A1 are sixth overall.
    Meanwhile, UCU defeated Falcons 101-91 in the men’s category of the natuional league on Friday

    22 June 2013


    Last night’s crunch tie between the UCU Canons and Falcons is probably the most offensively clinical game in the National Basketball League. The game shall be remembered for precise offensive execution by both teams, a total of 192 points in a season that has so far been characterized by very low scores especially when big teams meet.  The question remains though; who will stop the seemingly unstoppable UCU Canons?
    On the night, The Canons starting with Sudi Ulanga, Syrus Kiviiri, Namake Brian, Okwako Martin and Desmond Owili. A huge 68 points from the five starters with Sudi Ulanga coming out with the Canons high 26 points that included 4 of 7 attempts falling outside the arc;  Syrus Kiviiri dropping 13 points, Martin Okwako dropping 10 and 7 Rebounds, Brian Namake with 7 points and 5 Rebounds while Desmond Owili added 12 points and 9 Rebounds. The Canons bench was providing plenty of options too, Big man Ivan Lumanyika came off the bench to deliver 12 points and a huge game high 15 individual Rebounds. It almost looked as though Lumanyika was claiming everything that bounced off the glass. Boniface Okello similarly showing up last night, with 3 of 4 three pointers dropping to finish the game with 12 points.
    Falcons had a slow start, with Jeff Omondi and lead man Stephen Omony showing up when the game was already underway. The starters then were, Moses Okwera, Daniel Muli, Abdullahi ‘Dullah’ Ramadhan, Peter Elungat and Serge Kabangu. Phillip Ameny who has missed the last two Falcons encounters started on the bench. Despite not starting, Stephen Omony came out with the game high 27 points and 10 Rebounds, and a now fully fit and composed Dullah added 22 points for the Falcons.  Peter Elungat did not have the best night out delivering 6 points and only 2 Rebounds.
    The Canons were off to a good start winning the 1st and 2nd quarters, 31:17 and 25:24. This 56:41  halftime score could have been the final scoreboard on any other day like we’ve seen so far this season. The Falcons could then dig deep to cut the deficit with a 19:27 victory of the 3rd qtr. Falcons came too close in the last 2 minutes of the game, coming within 4 points but the Canons kept their composure all through it and when the clock stopping games started, the Canons were not missing on the charity line to win the 4th qtr 26:23 , with Desmond hitting his 3rd and buzzer dunk to ceil it 101:91.
    The game had major plays, but perhaps it’s the fluidity, the chemistry and composure with which the canons are playing that will get other title contenders thinking. For now, The Canons remain unbeaten thus far in this NBL Season and I should say, they’re also looking good.
    - See more at: http://basketball256.com/2013/sleek-canons-remain-unstopped-tame-falcons-10191/#sthash.JjsCPPQv.dpuf

    RWANDA : Senior Hoops team departs for Maputo

    The national basketball team departs on today for Mozambique to compete in Mozambique 38th independence anniversary tournament, which is scheduled for June 24-27 in Maputo.
    Head coach Moise Mutokambali and his assistant coach Jean Bahufite named have boosted the squad with two professional players including American-based youngster Patrice Twagirayezu and Kami Kabange, who play for Ugandan club City Oil.
    The tournament will have only three teams; Angola, Rwanda and host Mozambique after South Africa pulled out.
    Other players that got the nod for the first time include; Espoir pair youngster Placide Uwizeye and Congolese-born Bievenu Ngandu, America-based Twagirayezu, APR duo Mouhamed Rafiki Sanny Niyomugabo Munyandamutsa.
    According to head coach Mutokambali the tournament will be the part of preparations for this year’s 27th African basketball championships scheduled for August 20-31 in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.
    Apart from Rwanda, giants Angola and hosts Mozambique also qualified to compete for the tournament
    “We want to use this tournament as part of the preparations, we will use only local players to see their level of playing on international level but we will go with two professionals including, Kabange and Twagirayezu,” Mutokambali told Saturday Sport.

    Full squad:

    Aboubakar Barame (CSK), Aristide Mugabe (Espoir, skipper), Placide Uwizeye (Espoir), Jean Luc Girincuti (UNR), Mouhamed Rafiki (APR), Patrice Twagirayezu (Ashiville Christian Academy-USA), Lionel Hakizimana (APR), Olivier Shyaka (KBC), Sunny Niyomugabo (APR), 10.Ngandu Bienvenu(ESP), Olivier Muhizi (Espoir), Kami Kabange (City Oil-Uganda).

    Other officials on the delegation include; head of delegation Jean Claude Mulingo, physiotherapist, Martin Uwimana and international referee Didier Shema Maboko.

    21 June 2013

    KENYA : Strathmore, USIU lock horns in Premier Derby

  • Strathmore and USIU in a past league match.(Photo:SNA File)
  • Action in the national classic league resumes this weekend with a “varsities derby” pitting Strathmore University and United States International University- Africa, USIU-A, in the men premier. The two perennial rivals will meet on Sunday afternoon at the Nyayo National Stadium gymnasium in what is a sure bet to pull mammoth crowd.
    Apart from the fight for two precious league points, both sides trace their rivalry back to the universities league and this will be no exception.
    This will be their first meeting this season. The last meeting between the two sides was in last season’s quarter final playoffs which USIU emerged tops with a 2-0 series win.
    On a good day, USIU is a sure candidate to upstage their rivals who have occasionally played second fiddle in their recent encounters. However, current form might work against their chances.
    Strathmore are off a 61-59 win over Nairobi Aviation College last weekend while USIU lost 61-51 to Kenya Ports Authority, KPA, in their last match.
    This might literally give Strathore an edge but little can be said until the game is over. Ulinzi Warriors, who were 71-47 winners over Terror last weekend, has two tricky fixtures that could see their fortunes change handsomely if they reap maximum points.
    On Saturday, they will travel to Nakuru to play host Nakuru Club before playing Blazers on Sunday in Nairobi. Second placed Thunder take on Nairobi Aviation College in the highlight match on Saturday. If they win, they will sit top of the log with 17 points one more than current leaders Co-operative Bank who are not in action this weekend.
    KPA, fresh from their win over USIU, welcome whipping boys Terror at the Makande gymnasium with a win for the dockers highly palpable.
    Co-op face USIU
    The highlight match in the women premier will see Co-operative Bank play USIU-A in an early kickoff on Sunday in Nairobi. Both teams had mixed results last weekend which might play an integral role in deciding which side walks away with the win.
    USIU lost 64-60 to KPA while the bankers beat kenya College of Accountancy- University, KCA-U, 46-15.
    KPA will play host to Western Delight in Mombasa on Saturday with a second successive home win in sight while Storms Sprite and Mennonite clash in Nairobi the same day. It will be an easy match for the experienced Storms considering their opponents are winless from eight matches.
    Mennonite’s last match was a 118-15 humiliation by champions Eagle Wings last weekend.
    Western Delight will return to the court on Sunday to play Kwale-based NYTA-Shimba in what promises to be a tough Coastal tour for the Kakamega side.
    On the same day in Nairobi, there will be a not so attractive varsities derby pitting Kenyatta University Oryx and KCA-U.
    After their unbeaten record was broken by Equity Bank last weekend, Strathmore University will be keen on returning to winning ways when the play World Hope in the division one on Sunday. A day before, World Hope will have played Little Prince with KCA-U facing off with Trailblazers.
    Umoja has a date with Upperhill the same day. On Sunday, Zetech College will be up against Upperhill whose form has been wanting since capturing the secondary schools title.
    Collated Fixtures: Saturday- KPA vs Western Delight (2pm, KPA), KPA vs Terror (4pm, KPA), World Hope vs Little Prince (9am), Storms vs Mennonite (10:30am), KCA-U vs Trailblazers (12pm), Umoja vs KU Pirates (1:30pm), Nairobi Aviation vs Thunder (3pm), Nakuru Club vs Ulinzi (12pm, MHS); Sunday- NYTA-Shimba vs Western Delight (10am, KPA), World Hope vs Strathmore University (9am), Co-op Bank vs USIU-A (10:30am), Zetech College vs Upperhill (12pm), KU Oryx vs KCA-U (1:30pm), Ulinzi vs Blazers (3pm), Strathmore University vs USIU-A (4:30pm).

    UGANDA : UCU turn Canon fire on shaky Falcons

    Neither UCU Canons nor Falcons is playing the way they would love to. However, they have had contrasting starts to the Airtel National Basketball League.
       UCU have had a perfect start to the season, winning all six games thus far. Falcons face them tonight at the Lugogo MTN Arena having already lost twice in their six games.
      Much of this start has nothing to do with the quality of players. There isn’t a big difference between Falcons, also six-time champions, and UCU, five-time semifinalists, in terms of roster
    Their starts are pegged to the ‘peace’ within the ranks. “The team will come together when it matters. It’s early days, don’t read too much into what is happening now,” said coach Gad Eteu. The coach started the season as an assistant to head coach Tony Oluka like it was during their run to the final last year but with the latter absent without an explanation from him or management, the former is in charge.
    The sentiment of things looking up is shared by all the players. “We just haven’t trained together on enough occasions,” said Abdulahi Ramadhan, one of the biggest instigators of the chaos, according to sources.

    Besides, talk of infighting, which the club vehemently denies, centre Philip Ameny walked in after Falcons had rolled off their season. He is currently away with the team promising that he will be back but not attaching dates.

    20 June 2013

    UGANDA : Enabu’s 32 point haul sinks Warriors

    Enabu’s 32 point haul sinks Warriors
    Warriors 71-83 City Oilers
    Gladiators 35-70 Magic Stormers
    Jimmy Enabu poured in season high 32 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out 5 helpers to lead City Oilers to an 83-71 win over Warriors Wednesday night at the MTN Arena. Big man, Kami Kabange added 23 points and 13 rebounds as the pair formed a veritable two-man offense that Warriors couldn’t stop
    Oilers (5-2) jumped at Warriors (4-2) right from tip-off and quickly established a double digit lead in the first quarter that they maintained through the first half. Warriors chipped away in the third quarter and trailed 47-55 at the end of the period but Oilers opened the final quarter with a 7-0 run to take the lead back into double figure and didn’t look back again. “It’s all consistence. We needed to be consistent and we were in this particular game. We did not allow them back into the game” Jimmy Enabu told Kawowo Sports
    Warriors played catch-up all through the game and had several brief spurts but inevitably didn’t. Point guard, Ivan Enabu led the way for Warriors with team high 18 points, picked 7 rebounds and handed out 5 assists. Center, Henry Malinga added 13 points and 10 rebounds and Brian Gumisiriza chipped in with 10 points. “I think they had a better night than us. They capitalised on the mistakes we made” Ivan Enabu said. Ronnie Kasewu played with an injury and ambled slowly through the game making all the three normal 2s attempted but missed the three attempts beyond the arc and all nine freebies.
    Oilers were buoyed up by the return of power forward, Arou Ramadhan (8 points, 9 rebounds) particularly on the defensive end of the floor and crashed Warriors on the glass out-rebounding the two time champions 63-39 and rejecting 5 shots. The only reason Oilers didn’t score more than 83 points was their inability to shot from the line. Oilers were 21-of-48 on non-contested shots.
    In the women’s division, Magic Stormers blew-out Gladiators 70-35 behind Carol Nyafwono’s game high 21 points and 16 rebounds. Jackie Natocho and Sarah Nakitende contributed 9 points apiece for Stormers (4-3) while Rukia Meeme’s 5 points went along with 11 boards. Joan Muchiruku led Gladiators (2-6) with 14 points and guard, Stella Nikuze added 6 points. Charline Kirungi picked 14 rebounds for Gladiators.

    SEYCHELLES : IOCC - Anse Etoile Stars and PLS Hawks to represent Seychelles

    Seychelles will be represented by Anse Etoile Stars and PLS Hawks at this year’s Indian Ocean Club Championship in Mauritius from September 28 to October 6.
    Defending men’s and women’s first division champions PLS Hawks and Anse Etoile Stars are not new to this competition as they have taken part on a number of occasions.
    However, Seychelles’ only winners in the competition are Premium Cobras who won the title twice back in 1999 and in 2005.
    Anse Etoile Stars are so far leading the women’s league and if they can keep up the good results in the second round of the season, it will surely provide a massive boost for them by the time they make the trip to Mauritius to face the champions of the other countries of the region.
    PLS Hawks have already suffered two defeats in the first round of the men’s first division and will be hoping for a better showing in the second half of the season if they are to stand a chance of retaining their title.
    The Plaisance-based club will surely not want to head to Mauritius on the back of a disappointing season and must work hard to avoid it.
    Meanwhile, the national league’s second rounds will start on July 2.
    S. N.

    RWANDA : Basketball league kicks off on Saturday

    UGB vs 30-Plus
    KBC vs 30-Plus
    The 2013/14 national basketball league season is scheduled to kick off this weekend with two matches, one on Saturday and the other on Sunday, Rwanda Basketball Federation has confirmed.
    Seven teams have so far submitted their players’ lists but only two matches involving three teams will be played. On Saturday, United Generation Basketball (UGB) and 30-Plus will kick off the new season, while former league winners, Kigali Basketball Club will play against 30-Plus on Sunday.
    Initially, the league had been scheduled to start two weeks ago but because most teams had not yet submitted their squads, it was postponed to this weekend.
    Four teams, two men and two women have pulled out of next season’s national basketball league, the teams include; the National University of Rwanda (men and women), Kigali Institute of Education (men) and Circle Sportif de Kigali (women).
    There’s only one newcomer in men’s league, Gisenyi Basketball Club.
    The teams that have registered for the new season include; Rusizi, Circle Sportif Kigali, United Generation Basketball, defending champions Espoir, former winners APR and KBC, newcomers Gisenyi Basketball Club as well 30-Plus (men), while APR, Ubumwe and Rwanda Allied Peace for Progress (RAPP).
    Meanwhile, American-based youngster Patrice Twagirayezu and Kami Kabange, who play for Ugandan club City Oil will be the only two professional players on the national team that will compete in Mozambique 38th independence anniversary tournament.
    Twenty-year -old Twagirayezu linked up with team last week, while former APR and Espoir forward Kabange is expected to join before the team departs for Mozambique on Saturday.
    The tournament which is scheduled for June 24-27 in Maputo will have only three teams; Angola, Rwanda and host Mozambique after South Africa withdrew.
    According to Coach Moise Mutokambali the tournament will be the part of the preparations of this year’s 27th African basketball championships scheduled for August 20-31 in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire.

    19 June 2013

    NIGERIA : First Deepwater win 4th league title

    First Deepwater basketball club at the weekend retained the Nigeria women league title for a record fourth-time in a row with an 82-74 points win over hard fighting Dolphins basketball club in an explosive final at the sports hall of the national stadium, Surulere, Lagos.

    The Nigeria champion won the first and the fourth quarters by 24-12 and 24-21 points while it lost the second and third quarters to Dolphins by 14-19 and 20-22 points in a thrilling final.

    Former Nigeria and Africa champion First Bank basketball club won the losers final with a 68-52 points over Sunshine Angels basketball club.
    Honour roll call
    MVP: Nkechi Akashili – First Deepwater
    Highest Scorer: Amaka Nwakanma – Dolphins
    Highest Rebound: Evelyn Akhator – First Bank
    Block-shot: Evelyn Akhator – First Bank

    UGANDA : Friendly fire for Siamese hoops twins

    Kampala- Ambrose Tashobya, the Warriors patron, was part of the pioneers of City Oilers. He helped them to successive promotions from Division Three to Two then the Airtel National Basketball League.

    Mandy Juruni, the Oilers’ coach, was at Warriors last season. Besides coaching Warriors, Juruni played for Oilers at the same time. The two teams are like Siamese twins. Cut largely from the same cloth. But their clash at YMCA court has a lot to lose and again.

    Warriors, the reigning champions, are yet to hit the ground running. Oilers struggled offensively in their 47-52 loss to UCU Canons last Friday. Much of that was tied to the absence of Ramadhan Arou though it also had a lot do with the reliance on Kami Kabange whose 15 points and 12 rebounds proved insufficient. “We really missed Arou both on offense and defence,” Juruni admitted. Arou has been Oilers’ biggest offensive weapon thus far. The final periphery painted a rosier picture that what they were on the floor.
    They even tied the game at 47-up with 1.45seconds to play. Only UCU scored after that – all the next five points coming from free throws.
    With Jimmy Enabu, seven points, making only three of 10 from the foul line, the window was shut in their faces. “We still could have won the game on the line but we handed the game to them,” Juruni concluded.
    Kasewu injury
    It’s perhaps worse for Warriors who have already lost to the pacesetters UCU. While in Kigali for the Genocide Memorial tournament, guard Ronnie Kasewu got injured. Their talismanic captain, a two-time league champion and MVP four years ago, will not feature after a leg muscle strain.
     Coach Sam Samanya must now rely heavily on Ivan Enabu and Jude Ochen in the back court not only to facilitate the team but also score the bulk of the points.
    “Every game has helped us figure out something and we are slowly getting there,” Enabu said. If he gets his big men into rhythm early, Henry Malinga and Sam Gombya have the game to trouble the Oilers. The bigger worry is that Malinga is not getting younger and the Oilers’ front court is more athletic than Warriors’. Whatever the result, both teams won’t sob too much as they are almost intertwined.
    MEN: W’riors vs. City Oilers (8.30pm)
    W: Gladiators vs. Stormers (6.30pm)

    18 June 2013

    KENYA : KPA Coach happy with team’s progress

    Antony Ojuku
    Antony Ojuku
     Updated on 18/06/13  |    By BRIAN AYIEKO
    Kenya Ports Authority men’s basketball team coach Antony Ojuku is happy with how his team is performing so far in the KBF Premier League.
    The team has played six matches losing two of those. The losses came courtesy of Defending Champs Co-op Bank who beat the Mombasa based side 59-54 and Blazers club who had a narrow win over them the scores being 65-63.
    According to Ojuku his team has impressed considering he is building up a new squad, “this is a young team with a number of new players and with the performance they are giving at the moment I am happy as much as the league is still in its early stages.”
    Ojuku explains that his main target so far in the 2013 season is to reach the semi-finals of the play offs after which they will set their sights in the finals, “we want to win as many matches as possible both in the 1st and 2nd leg after which when we get to the play offs getting a place in the semis will be our main target. When this is achieved we shall look at the prospects of winning the league.”
    KPA’s last match saw them beat 2012 runners up USIU Tigers 61-51 at home and the coach states that USIU did not play well in the clash, “despite defeating USIU on Saturday, I must admit that they did not play according to how I know them. I hope in the second leg they will do better.”

    NIGERIA : Dodan Warriors Maintain DSTV League Lead With Customs Win

    Dodan Warriors trounced Customs of Lagos 73-47 and 63- 60 in their two-legged encounter on Friday and Sunday respectively in their Atlantic Conference matches in Lagos to maintain leadership of the DSTV Men's Basketball League.
    Speaking yesterday against the backdrop of the victory, Coach Peter Ahmedu said that his players' discipline was yielding good results in the ongoing DStv Men's Premier Basketball League.
    Ahmedu said in Lagos that his team was underrated when the 2012/2013 season started, but that their approach had made them a force to reckon with.
    Dodan Warriors are now the first of eight teams in the Atlantic Conference league table with 12 wins and 4 losses so far in the three month-old competition
    "I thank God for how we have been turning out good results in our weekly matches. I am happy with my players' level of commitment and professionalism. They make my work complete.
    "My players take to instructions and play according to how we plan; their execution of every game plan on the court is a justification of how prepared they are.
    "We hope to continue like this as we intend to make the final four of the Atlantic Conference," Ahmedu said.
    However, Coach Scot Nnaji of Customs said that his players lost the last game due to lack of concentration.
    He said there were some matches that they would win and some they would lose, but that a team would go into every game hoping to win.
    "We lost to a better team; they are disciplined and highly competitive. We came back stronger in the second leg hoping to pick one of the two-leg encounters.
    "We will go into our coming matches with a lot of seriousness as the season is gradually dragging to the period where teams would strive hard for points," Nnaji said.
    Customs are currently occupying the sixth position with six wins and 10 losses.
    In the other matches played at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium, Lagos on Sunday, Police Baton defeated city rivals Lagos Islanders 67-61.
    Police Baton was able to turn around their initial loss to Islanders 76-80 on Friday in their first leg encounter.
    However, Police Baton is currently last in the conference, recording just four wins and 12 losses.

    RWANDA : Four Teams Pull Out of Basketball League

    Four teams, two men and two women have pulled out of next season's national basketball league, the Rwanda basketball Federation Secretary General Richard Mutabazi has confirmed to Saturday Sport.
    The teams include; the National University of Rwanda (men and women), Kigali Institute of Education (men) and Circle Sportif de Kigali (women).
    It means next season will have eight men's teams namely; Rusizi, Circle Sportif Kigali , United Generation Basketball, defending champion Espoir,30-Plus, Kigali Basketball Club, former league winners APR and newcomers Gisenyi Basketball Club.
    In women category, only the champions APR, Ubumwe and Rwanda Allied Peace for Progress have registered for the new season.
    "It's unfortunate that instead of having more teams registering, some are just pulling out, but as federation, there is nothing we can do. The good news from all this is that at least there is one new team in men's league (Gisenyi Basketball Club)," said Mutabazi.
    He added, "To have four teams puling out for next season is a big blow to Rwandan basketball but we have to accept it because some teams are struggling financially."

    17 June 2013

    KENYA : Blades cut off Aviation’s resilience

     Updated on 17/06/13  |    By BRIAN AYIEKO

    Strathmore University ‘Blades’ pulled a remarkable come back to beat fellow students Nairobi Aviation 61-59 in the KBF Premier league on Sunday afternoon at the Nyayo Gymnasium.
    Aviation who gained promotion from Division One this season had led the Makadara based Blades in the first three quarters but after intense pressure in the last quarter gave up their lead and lost their sixth match in the league. The first quarter saw Aviation take a two point lead the scores being 11-9.
    Strathmore seemed to have lapses in concentration in the quarter as they failed to recover back in defence whenever they attacked and most of their shots went off the rim. The situation was more of the same in the second quarter where they lost out to Aviation once more getting 11 points while their opponents managed to sink in 19 points. This put the half time scores at 30-20 in favor of the league newcomers.
    The 3rd quarter saw Aviation capitalize on 3 point shots and widen the gap with 18 points in the quarter while Blades garnered 13 points to put the total scores at 48-43 with Nairobi Aviation still leading. It was in the last quarter that Aviation had a string of turnovers while at the same time Strathmore pushed with high paced attacks that they succumbed to an 11-18 loss.
    Blades made good use of the rebounds they secured in the quarter with Aviation clearly looking exhausted and this ensured Tony Ochieng’s side took home the 2 league points. The win sees Strathmore move to 4th in the table standings with 12 points after 7 matches. Aviation so far has 8 points from the seven matches they have played.

    KENYA : Warriors arrest terrorists at Nyayo

     Updated on 17/06/13  |    By BRIAN AYIEKO

    Ulinzi Warriors had an easy time when they faced University of Nairobi ‘Terrorists’ in the Kenya Basketball Federation Premier League. They beat the students 71-47 on Sunday afternoon at the Nyayo Gymnasium.
    Ulinzi who had their characteristic physical play dominated the match winning all four quarters. In the 1st quarter they managed to hold off the students with an 11-8 win then proceeded to take the 2nd quarter with 18 points to Terror’s 16 points. This put the half time scores at 29-24 in favor of the Defence Forces side.
    The half saw Terror lose the ball through the many turnovers they had in their own half and at the same time Ulinzi’s Geoffrey Mwaniki was a constant threat with the 3 point shots. In the 3rd and 4th quarter Ulinzi stamped their authority with a 26-10 win in the 3rd while the last quarter saw them get 16 points to Terror’s 13 points and take the day.
    The win was Ulinzi’s third after seven matches and they have frog jumped the students in the table standing. Ulinzi so far has 10 points while Terrorists have 9 points with both teams having played 7 matches.

    NIGERIA : Women Basketball - Dolphins Battle First Deepwater for the Crown

    The stage is set today for the grand finale of the 9th Zenith Bank NBBF female basketball league play-offs at the National Stadium in Lagos. The battle for supremacy draws two Lagos teams, reigning champions, First Deepwater, who are seeking a fourth straight title and Dolphins, who are inkling to have a first taste of the title.
    Dolphins became strong contenders for the title after beating perpetual finalist and former champions, First Bank 72-64 to break the monotonous final which always featured First Bank and First Deepwater.
    On the other hand, Deepwater had no problem beating hard-fighting Sunshine Angels 80-46 in the first semi-finals and announced their resolve to grab a fourth straight title.
    It may not be out of place to predict an easy win for First Deepwater over Dolphin, afterall the Oil and Gas ladies have maintained an unbeaten run this season besides setting a 100% record performance in the past three years.
    However, with such challenging opportunity on their hands to make history, Dolphins no doubt will fight to finish given their above average performance in all three legs of the league, Abuja, Asaba and

    NIGERIA : NBBF Targets Rio Olympics Bronze

    The journey that started in Venezuela in 2012 that culminated in an unprecedented first ever Olympic Games qualifier in the London 2012 Olympics in England will ultimately end with a bronze medal at the next Olympics in Rio, Brazil should the NBBF get the needed support it has revealed.
    President of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) Tijjani Umar exclusively told LEADERSHIP WEEKEND SPORTS that away from breaking the jinx of never winning the African Cup of Nations for Men this term in Cote d'Ivoire, by picking the title for the first time in Afrobasket 2013, has an eye for one of the tickets to the world championships and ultimately aiming for a bronze medal at the next Olympics in Brazil.
    Last week in a build up to having a strong appearance at the Afrobasket in Abidjan, the federation released a list of 15 players to slug it out for shirts at the Stankovich Cup in China. The team was a mixture of the home based team and the Olympic squad that did Nigeria proud in London coupled with few new stars. The players for the continental tournament are Mike Ohiero, Abubakar Usman, Stanley Gumut, Yahaya Abdul and Nkem Ojougboh from the local league others include Richard Oruche, Deji Egbeyemi, Stan Okoye, Ike Diougu, Solomon Alabi, Olumide Oyedeji, Kingsley Oguchi, Kelechi Anuna, Ehimen Orukpe and Ben Uzoh.
    The tournament slated for two Chinese cities of Lanzhou and Guanzhou between June 26 to July 10, the federation says kickstarts the team's international preparations for the Afrobasket men. "We are aiming for the Afrobasket cup in Cote d'Ivoire in August and also one of the slots from Africa to the world championship in Spain. But ultimately also, we want to win the bronze medal in three years' time in the Olympics in Rio, Brazil.
    So, our road map is a complete package ranging from the Afrobasket, world championship and Olympics. We are building on the successes recorded at the last Olympics to achieve these and with supports from the government, corporate organizations and Nigerians all these are achievable." Umar revealed. The coach that is saddled with the responsibility, Ayodele Bakare expressed optimism that Nigeria is good enough to win the Afrobasket as well as pick one of the tickets to the world championships. "Nigeria is likely to win the tournament in Abidjan. But there are two objectives going to Abidjan; one is to win one of the three tickets to the world championships at stake from Africa.

    SEYCHELLES : National League

    Heat scorch Baya to maintain title charge

    Beau Vallon Heat have been “moving mountains” according to coach Guy Hall and on Saturday they pulled off another victory – against second-placed Baya who had been hot on their heels.
    Defended by PLS Hawks’ Bernard Bristol, former Baya player Giovanni Laval (with ball) has been carrying Beau Vallon Heat in all their winsThe Heat triumphed 80-59 at Victoria Gymnasium on Saturday to stay unbeaten in eight games and end the first round unbeaten.
    Promoted to play with the elites after winning the bottom division title at the end of last season, the Heat have been defying all odds to top the league table.
    On Saturday, Baya failed to set into any kind of rhythm in the first quarter and the Heat took advantage to set a commanding pace, winning it 25-9.
    Their opponents managed to regain their composure in the second quarter which they won 19-16 but still the Heat were ahead by 13 points – 41-28 – at half-time.
    The two teams tied each other at 18-18 in the third quarter, but in the final 10-minute spell Baya’s effort of 13 points proved to be too little as the Heat got 21 to run away with the win on an 80-59 final score.
    Speaking to Sports Nation, coach Hall claimed that his team have been “moving mountains” and this could not be further from the truth as it has been proven time and time again that the so-called “smaller teams” always faced daunting tasks when they met giants PLS Hawks and Premium Cobras.
    Coach Hall’s boys have managed to overcome every obstacle that has come their way, and surely this is a very promising sign for local basketball as the local game has become more competitive compared to the days when all titles would head to either Premium Cobras or PLS Hawks.
    Coach Hall said his team headed into the season with the aim of maintaining their first division status, but with the way his squad has been performing, they now have every right to believe that they can challenge for the league title. And who would bet against them?
    The former Premium Cobras coach added that they are focusing solely on the league for the moment, taking every game with a winning mentality, where he believes his main rivals are Baya and PLS Hawks.
    Meanwhile, PLS Hawks managed to keep the pressure on the leaders last Saturday with a 96-76 win over Anse Boileau-based Angels.
    S. N.

    16 June 2013

    KENYA : Lions maul Co-op as Eagle Wings consolidate lead

  • Defending champions Co-operative Bank suffered a huge setback in its campaign this season after going down 53-61 to Lions in a national classic league match played at the Nyayo National Stadium gymnasium on Saturday.
    This was the third loss for the bankers after earlier defeats to Thunder and Ulinzi Warriors.
    Co-op Bank was leading 25-24 at halftime and could not hold on to the one point lead upon resumption. The first quarter went Lions’ way 14-11 before the bankers carried home the second 14-10.
    The bankers prevailed in the third quarter winning 22-16 but were outplayed in the fourth which Lions won by a convincing 21-6 margin. Joseph Ondinyo top scored for Co-op Bank with 14 points while Tobias Onyango had 19 for Lions.
    Thunder moved to within a point of Co-op Bank after struggling to beat Mennonite Knights 56-51. Ulinzi returned to winning ways on Sunday after beating University of Nairobi’s Terrorist 71-47.
    International player William Ochieng led the scores for Ulinzi with 23 points and grabbed ten offensive rebounds and 2 defensive rebounds.
    Geoffrey Mwaniki had 10 points with 2 offensive rebounds and one defensive rebound. Hillary Kubai top scored for Terror with 13 points. Ulinzi won all the quarters 11-8, 18-16, 26-10 and 16-13 respectively.
    KPA edge out USIU 
    In Mombasa, host Kenya Ports Authority, KPA, utilized home ground advantage to beat United States International University- Africa, USIU-A, 61-51.
    In the women premier, reigning champions Eagle Wings cemented their position at the top of the log with a flattering 118-15 win over Mennonite. Annerose Atieno and Angela Akoth had 23 points each for Wings with Vivian Akinyi hitting 6 for Mennonite.
    All the quarters were won by the Eagles 22-2, 21-3, 40-8 and 35-2 in that order. KPA kept the pace after registering a slim 64-60 win over USIU-A at the Makande gymnasium on Saturday. KPA will share the second spot on the log with Co-op Bank who beat Kenya College of Accountancy- University, KCA-U, 46-15.
    The students performed dismally with the first quarter ending dry as they never scored a basket for the entire ten minutes. Co-op Bank eventually won 13-0. The bankers ran riot in the remaining quarters with 9-4, 11-4 and 13-7 wins.
    Strathmore University continued with their rise registering a 59-26 win over Kenyatta University Oryx.
    In division one, Strathmore University’s seven match unbeaten run went down crumbling on Sunday after succumbing to a 59-45 loss at the hands of Equity Bank. Brian Obimbo had 19 points for the bankers with Godfrey Abuya adding 17.
    Upperhill, under coach Ronnie Owino, lost 86-68 to Umoja in the other match played in the league. Kevin Sunguti and Eric Reuben top scored for Umoja with 28 and 21 points respectively while Joseph Ongoro had 23 for Upper Hill. The students led 35-34 at halftime.
     Collated Results: KPA 61 USIU-A 51 (men), KPA 64 USIU-A 60 (ladies), KAA 47 World Hope 38, Zetech College 43 Little Prince 45, Eagle Wings 118 Mennonite 15, Strathmore University 59 KU Oryx 26, Thunder 56 Mennonite 51, Umoja 86 Upperhill 68, Co-op Bank 53 Lions 61, Strathmore University 45 Equity Bank 59, Terror 47 Ulinzi 71, Co-op Bank 46 KCA-U 15, Trailblazers 86 Parklands Baptist 61.

    KENYA : Co-op Bank, Lions clash highlight of the Weekend

  • Lions will play host to defending champions Co-operative Bank in the highlight match of the national classic league fixtures this weekend to be played at the Nyayo National Stadium gymnasium on Saturday.
    The bankers go to the match with an advantage sitting at the top of the log with 16 points while Lions are third with 11. Lions have, however, played three matches less than Co-op Bank.
    The match will present the Carey Odhiambo men with an opportunity to consolidate their lead if they win.
    A win for Lions will take them to joint second with Thunder who play Mennonite Knights. The last time both sides met was in December last year during the league playoffs semifinals which the bankers won 2-1 in the best-of-three series.
    With their matches against Lions being a tough encounter always, Co-op Bank captain Brian Busu believes they will not be a pushover and a win is their main target.
    “They are a good team but we will be going for nothing short of a win. We have trained well and ready for the battle.”
    Lions assistant coach Francis Ngunjiri says any of the teams has equal chances to win even though they will be keen on a win as well.
    “This is a tough match because we respect each other. It can go either way.”
    United States International University- Africa, USIU-A, has an equally tough task when they play against Kenya Ports Authority, KPA, in Mombasa.
    USIU is the only team to have played fewer matches at four and have so far won three and lost one. A win will undoubtedly see them climb up the log significantly.
    Ulinzi guarded against Terrorist
    Ulinzi Warriors will be looking to put aside their poor start with a possible win against University of Nairobi’s Terrorist on Sunday.
    Out of six matches, they have only won two and inking down their third victory will be the main target this weekend.
    The other match in the men premier will see bottom side Nairobi Aviation College face off with Strathmore University. In the women premier, leaders Eagle Wings have an opportunity to cement their leadership when they play against winless Mennonite.
    The match will seemingly be an easy one for the champions who have only lost once from their six matches played.
    In Mombasa, it will be a battle for the second place when USIU-A and KPA face off in a potentially tight match.
    Both sides are second with ten points from five matches each with home ground advantage favoring the Dockers. Strathmore University, the only side to have beaten Wings this season, has an easy match against Kenyatta University Oryx who have only one win to show for.
    Co-op Bank, also on ten points, has a chance of claiming the second position when they play Kenya College of Accountancy- University, KCA-U.
    Safe Spaces and Sprite Storms are the other teams with ten points but will be out of action this weekend. The highlight match in division one will see unbeaten leaders Strathmore University face Equity Bank on Sunday afternoon.
    Only two points separate the two teams and a win can go either side. Zetech College will play Little Prince, Kenya Airports Authority, KAA, play World Hope, Trailblazers will be up against Parklands Baptist with Umoja facing off with Upper Hill.
    Collated Fixtures: Saturday- KPA vs USIU Flames (2pm), KPA vs USIU Tigers (4pm, Mombasa), KAA vs World Hope (9am), Zetech College vs Little Prince (10:30am), Eagle Wings vs Mennonite (12pm), Strathmore University vs KU Oryx (1.30pm), Thunder vs Mennonite (3pm), Lions vs Co-op Bank (4:30pm); Sunday- Trailblazers vs Parklands Baptist (9am), Co-op Bank vs KCA-U (10:30am), Umoja vs Upperhill (12pm), Strathmore University vs Equity Bank (1:30pm), Terror vs Ulinzi (3pm), Strathmore University vs Nairobi Aviation College(4:30pm).

    15 June 2013

    UGANDA : Immense defense overshadows UCU’s win

    Immense defense overshadows UCU’s win

    City Oilers 47-52 UCU Canons
    KIU Rangers 55-34 Gladiators
    UCU Canons used a strong defensive display in the second and third quarter to hand City Oilers their second loss of the season Friday night the MTN Arena. The Canons defensive effort in the two periods turned out to be little more than a highlight-reel sideshow to the university side’s sixth straight win of the season.
    After a first quarter in which UCU Canons couldn’t stop anything City Oilers did, the university side recaptured their defensive and aggressive game. UCU’s defense was as close to perfection as it can ever get limiting the second top scoring team in the league to a single field goal in the second quarter and season low 3 points in the frame. “We lost the rhythm after the first quarter” Oilers guard, Jimmy Enabu (7 points) noted.  The strong defensive effort was coupled with a fair offense as Canons (6-0) rallied back from a 14 points deficit in the first quarter to a 27-25 lead at halftime powered by Syrus Kiviri who scored 8 of his co-game high 15 points in the period. UCU’s solid play continued through the third quarter. “The difference was defense. I told them to stay focused on our assignments especially on the defensive end and that it was just the first quarter and  we had to understand that there was still a lot of basketball to be played” UCU’s coach, Nicholas Natuhereza on the games turn around. Forward, James Okello (6 points, 6 rebounds) opened the third quarter with an and1 to take Oilers up 28-27 but only temporarily as big canon, Desmond Owili (6 points, 9 rebounds and 3 blocks) hit a fade away mid-range jumper near the baseline to ignite UCU’s control of a quarter they closed out leading by 10 points through Suudi Ulanga’s buzzer beater.
    City Oilers trimmed UCU’s lead to 2 points (43-45) with 4:25 in fourth quarter, Canons missed their two shots on the next couple of possessions and with 3:35, Nziza Rurangira (9 points) nailed a go-ahead trey for Oilers followed by a freebie from Andrew Opio (3points, 10 rebounds). UCU’s forward, Martin Okwako (9 points) tied the game at 47 after 25 seconds. A throw from Ivan Lumanyika and another close basket from Okwako took Canons up 50-47. With 53 seconds an offensive foul was called on Syrus Kiviri and Canons were clearly miffed by the call but Ronnie Kalule missed both throws after which UCU’s coach, Nicholas Natuhereza called for a time out and on return Oiler, James Okello was sent to line and also missed both throws. UCU got possession and Suudi Ulanga (7 points) drew a foul from Enabu and sunk both resultant shots to seal the game for UCU with 5 seconds to the final buzzer.
    City Oilers had the worst game of the season so far - going 18-for-43 inside the arc, 3-for-18 from down town and 12-for-36 on the line. The Oilers dominated the glass out rebounding Canons 60-48 “I think there are games that just don’t come your way. Lose momentum, miss shots – free throws” Enabu said. Kami Kabangu led all Oilers scorers with 15 points and 12 rebounds. After going 5-for-6 in the first quarter, the center struggled to get his shot off against the physical defense of Desmond Owili, Ivan Lumanyika and Martin Okwako going 2-for-13 in the last three quarters. Oilers play Warriors next on Wednesday night. “We have to go back to the drawing board and be better in the next game. We have to be better against Warriors” Enabu vowed.
    KIU Rangers meanwhile got their second win against Gladiators to improve to 4-2. Rangers met little resistance from Gladiators (2-5) who only competed in the first quarter and let KIU take charge from the second quarter as they missed their shots.  Judith Nansobya and Florence Nanyonga scored 10 points apiece to lead the way for Rangers, Moreen Atulinda added 8 points. Joan Muchiruku paced Gladiators with 10 points, Conneria Atuhaire had 9 rebounds.

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