Kenya Morans AfroBasket ambitions still on course

Monday, November 30th, 2020 00:00 |
Kenya Morans AfroBasket ambitions still on course.

After 27 years of missing from the African basketball scene, Kenya’s men’s national basketball team,  the  Morans,  are one win away from making a long overdue return to the big stage.  

Morans’ journey back to the AfroBasket since 1993 when Kenya hosted the games, can be traced back to 2018 when, with the help of Desmond Owili, they played two friendly matches against the Rwandese national team at the Kigali Arena.  

The trip to Rwanda under then coaches David Maina and Carey Odhiambo,  its shortcomings notwithstanding, was the trigger of a chain of events that led to Morans qualifying to the AfroBasket qualifiers after a long absence. 

On Friday last week,  the Cliff Owuor-coached side recovered from two losses to power houses Senegal and Angola in group B of the AfroBasket qualifiers to beat higher ranked Mozambique and keep their dream of featuring in the 2021 continental showpiece alive.  

With two months of training before the second leg of qualification where the team will need at least one win to reach the final,  Morans have their work cut out as they face the same teams in the return leg.  

“We deserve to be at the AfroBasket and we will do everything to ensure that we qualify in February.

The team was not at its best in this first round as we were missing some key players.

Their inclusion will boost our chances of qualification,” said Griffin Ligare, the long serving captain.  

An elated Owuor said that they will stop at nothing to clinch that ticket to be at the Kigali Arena, where the AfroBasket is scheduled to take place in August next year. 

Meanwhile,  as Morans put up a spirited performance,  the team’s management before and during the trip left a lot to be desired.  

 It is clear that the Kenya Basketball Federation and management board need to put their house in order if Morans are to compete with the best in the continent.

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