THE Bulawayo Basketball Association is ready to play host to the national championship finals set for Bulawayo Club of the Disabled on Saturday. Preliminaries for the tournament were held in Harare a fortnight ago with city clubs giving a good account of themselves with three Bulawayo teams qualifying for the semi-finals. The City of Kings is being represented by Giants and Highlanders in the womens category while in the mens Kings stood the heat to stay among the countrys top four clubs. Joe Mujuru a spokesperson for the organisers of the event and also a member of the provincial executive and Kings management, said Bulawayo was ready to give a good account of itself on both the courts and in organising.
We are ready to play host to the national championships and all the teams have confirmed their participation and are expected to arrive tomorrow (today). The supporters should come in their numbers to support their home teams, he said. The Bulawayo teams have fully prepared for the nationals and are ready to battle it out for the gold medals. Kings have declared war on JBC the Harare based team. Garikai Gumbo of Kings is nursing an injury and has been doing light training. He could however be among the trumpcards if he recovers on time for Saturdays matches. With the winners and runners-up to take part in the Clubs All-Africa Championships in South Africa later during the year, fireworks are expected at BCD. One of the semi-finals will be an all-Bulawayo womens encounter pitting Highlanders and Giants in what should be a tightly contested match.
Giants were the more dominant in provincial activity last season and Highlanders will all be out to redeem themselves and rekindle memories of their golden past in which with Unita Dube, Abigail Little, Angela Muhomba and MaRo Phiri they dominated Kodak Championships. Their opponents have been a formidable preposition in the last 15 years. Harares JBC and Raiderz complete the semi-final line up in the womens category. In the mens section Midlanders Unicorn will carry the Southern Regions hopes of sporting success when they take on Raiderz in the first semi-final. The second will be between Bulawayo hopefuls Kings and JBC. The first match of the day will be at 8.30am. Third place play-offs will precede the finals with the womens at 1730 hours.