THE provisional list of players for the 10th All Africa Games slated for Maputo, Mozambique will be released next week, coach Philip Onyango disclosed yesterday.
A total of 30 players including four school girls and eight players from the diaspora have been identified and their names will be made public next Friday.
Onyango, who talked to the Star from Mombasa, said all the players will have to prove their worth during training before gaining a place in the final national team. "We have already identified the players both here and abroad. We will give the list to Kenya Basketball Federation who will then make an official announcement next week," said Onyango, adding that "Only players who merit selection will be named in the final roster."
Onyango defended his appointment, saying he's a trained coach who has groomed many players and some of them are currently in USA. " I have what it takes to guide this team to success," he said. "I am trained as coach by Fiba Africa instructor. I have also handled the Kenya Ports Authority team and I have all the credentials of a coach," he said. Onyango's appointment alongside Cliff Owuor to handle the national team to the All Africa Games was recently criticised by Nairobi Basketball Association (NBA) chairman Ronny Owino.
During the last Pan Africa Games in Algiers, Algeria in 2007, Kenya were placed fifth among 12 teams. Onyango said the three players who played a key role in Algiers event were in fact his products. "Josephine Owino, Rose Ouma and Gladys Wanyama played a sterling role in the team's success in the last All Africa Games. Let everybody know that the trio were at one time my players," he said.
Meanwhile, Kenya Airways whipped Aquinas High School 115-29 in a Nairobi Basketball Association (NBA) league match at Railways Club.
Eric Odhiambo made 20 and Victor Omondi added 13 for "KQ" who remain unbeaten. Alvin Odopo shot 15 for the students. They also posted another easy 80-38 win over Heroes with John Otieno topping the chart with 18. Strathmore University pipped KU Pirates 60-54, behind 14 points from Michael Ligare but KU's Gilbert Obiero managed 15. Upper Hill clobbered Friends of Basketball (FoB) 70-37. Collins Ochieng bagged 20 while Peter Majok scored 16 for "Upper. Ochieng recorded 24 and Majok 16 in another 71-64 victory over Don Bosco.
KU went on to hit Legacy 49-37 on Collins Wekesa's 11 points. Daniel Odhiambo pepped the losers with 13. Ray Nyatome shot 25 points to guide Multi Media University clobbered Neosasa Morans 62-46. Odhiambo bagged 20 for Morans. Old Pirates had 12 points from Reagan Basweti in a 55-41 win over Neosasa Morans who had 20 from Kennedy Odhiambo.