TANZANIA : Explosive Savio overwhelm JKT

Savio kept alive hopes of winning this year’s Dar es Salaam regional basketball league title with a well-deserved 50-36 points victory over defending champions JKT in a match played at the National Indoor Stadium on Sunday.

Savio’s technical superiority over JKT was evident right from the start after orchestrating well co-ordinated attacks, scoring with ease while deploying tight marking to thwart JKT onslaughts at the rear.

JKT lacked confidence in front of Savio’s hoop throughout the first two quarters and their dependable scoring trio of Juma Kisoky, Charles Makene and Frank Simkoko, surprisingly failed to convert easy lay-ups on the few occasions they managed to penetrate.

Savio led by 15-9 points and then extended into 30-17points in the first and second quarters, respectively. Their exhilarating performance never showed strains, not disappointing their fans who courageously to cheer wildly.

The much anticipated battle between two of the best point guards in the league, Mohamed Yusuph of Savio and Frank Kusiga of JKT lived up to its billing and the Savio man was undoubtedly the better of the duo in the game.

While Yusuph dominated the floor with his usual stunning dribbling skills which time and again helped to expose JKT defence and created chances for team mates, Kusiga was simply short of that.

The winners deployed tight marking as big men George Tarimo and Jije Makani at their best on the court.

Tarimo and Makani’s superb form once again came into play in the match as they easily tamed JKT players, taking rebounds and pressing forward to score and give Savio the much needed competitive edge.

JKT slightly did away with their timid approach in the third quarter and began pressing hard for points but they still lacked the key to unlock Savio defense as they had to rely on Francis Mlewa’s three-pointers in an attempt to reduce the score margin.

Makani scored 14 points and pulled five rebounds, Tarimo had 13 points and three rebounds and Henry Mwinuka added 11 points and two rebounds for Savio.

Mlewa scored 14 points for JKT to finish as the team’s highest scorer while team mates Himid Choka and Kisoky capped a frustrating afternoon with six and five points, respectively.

ABC thrashed Vijana by 91-61points in another match played earlier at the same venue to intensify the battle for title chase alongside league pace makers, Savio.

There was little Vijana could do in the match as their aggressive opponents made life difficult for them throughout the match.