By ERICK OCHIENG’
Kenya Basketball Federation (KBF) has named top players in its leagues during the just-concluded season.
Ulinzi forward Victor Odendo, who recently featured in the All-Star Senior Basketball Competition, emerged KBF’s Most Valuable Player (MVP) in the men’s Division One League.
He featured for Ulinzi Warriors, who came to the league this year after being in the cold for a long period of time following the team’s dissolution over lack of sponsorship.
His efforts earned Ulinzi promotion to the Men’s Premier League next year after the team emerged top in the category.
Also promoted are Mennonites, who finished second behind Ulinzi. Trail Blazers were third.
Odendo has proved his quality by capturing back the MVP award he bagged in the 2008 season while playing for the Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB).
Odendo is best remembered for having steered KCB to regional men’s championships in Ethiopia (2008), Uganda (2009) and Burundi (2010) with an impressive finish.
Mennonites had something to be proud of as Most Defensive Player (MDP) Award went to Steve McOdongo from the club. But the women’s Premier League category was full of surprises. The MVP award was bagged by veteran player Helen Oketch of Kenya Ports Authority (KPA).
America-based import, Silalei Shanice, who has been featuring for regional champions Eagle Wings, was voted MDP despite playing in the league for only months.
KPA won the women’s league after coming from behind to narrowly beat Eagle Wings. Strathmore University emerged third.
Ali Salim of Co-Op Bank was named MVP in the men’s Premier League.
Salim led Co-Op, who last won the KBF title in 1998, to victory on Sunday.
Co-op won the title after they were declared winners by KBF officials following chaos by fans of former champions KCB.
KCB has been relegated to position eight and Posta, who finished third, were relegated to the second position.
Kenya Navy and Kenya Airports Authority are other teams from the Provincial League, which were promoted to the men’s Division One League.
Meanwhile, organisers of the All-Star Basketball Championships held on Saturday night at Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium have promised a bigger event next year.
All Stars Basketball manager, Sammy Kirya said next years edition will be bigger and better organised as it will involve more teams.