By DAILY NEWS
TANZANIA got their campaign at the ongoing Zone V basketball championship off to a false start after the women’s team succumbed to a heavy 94-30 defeat at the hands of host Rwanda.
According to the Tanzania Basketball Federation (TBF) General Secretary, Alexander Msoffe, who accompanied the team in Kigali, the local queens had a slow start to the game at Amahoro Indoor Stadium and the Rwandese commanded the game from all angles leaving the local team picking up in a snail speed which trailed by 65-21 at the breather.
The local queens could not recover in the final two quarters and had no answers to their opponent’s fast game.
The hosts added 29 points against 9 managed by the Tanzanian ladies and had all the reason to celebrate their second win after Monday’s 98-53 of Ethiopia.
Msoffe conceded the ladies were completely off-form yesterday and attributed it to fatigue after travelling a long journey from Dar es Salaam to Kigali, Rwanda by bus, arriving in Rwanda on Monday evening.
Their male counterparts were playing as Rwanda outclassed Burundi in their opening match on Monday with a convincing 98-60 win.
It was a forgettable and painful opening day for Ugandans too at the Championship after their men and women teams lost their opening matches.
The men’s team ran out of steam in the final quarter to lose to Kenya 61-76 whereas the women recovered from a slow start but it was too late to hold off Burundi, who won 73-69.
Captain Stephen Omony’s game-high 29 points and 10 rebounds failed to rescue Uganda, who had limited scoring options with five of the 12 not troubling the scorer.
Having fallen behind in the first period 24-19, Uganda played with great intensity in defence
when Boniface Okello was introduced to take the next 15-14 before Kenya nicked the third 17-16.
An expected photo-finish didn’t materialize with the latter cruising through the ultimate quarter 21- 11.
Norman Blick, Joseph Ikong, Ivan Enabu and Ben Komakech didn’t score at all in a combined 63 minutes on the floor.
Forward Isaac Afidra (12) was the only other player to breach the 10-point barrier. “Inconsistency really hurt us. I am confident we can bounce back if our guards come to the party,” coach Gad Eteu said.
Though the Kenyans were slightly bigger, Uganda edged the board contest 43-42 but found no answers to experienced centre Peter Kiganya (25-13).
Centre Robert Mubiru thrilled in bits for his eight points and six rebounds. His understudies Brian Ssentogo (4-3) and Edwin Kateregga (5-2) need to step up.
There was no respite for the women even though guard Maureen Amoding came off the bench
to score a team-high 23 points.