Kenya Morans fall to Ivory Coast despite spirited fight in Afro basket opener

Thursday, August 26th, 2021 08:41 |
Kenya Morans play South Sudan in Nairobi in January 2020. Photo/SPORTS AFRICA

A recharged Kenya Moran's marked their return to the Fiba Afro basket Championship with an 88-70 loss to give time champions Ivory Coast, in their Group C opener at the Kigali Arena, Rwanda.

Moran's were making a return to the top African men’s basketball competition after 28 years, and gave a good account of themselves, but were hard done by inexperience.

The Liz Mills coached side were impressive in the first quarters, but turnovers, fouls and sloppy shooting were their greatest undoing in the last two quarters, paving the way for the Ivorian’s to cruise to victory.

Despite the game’s top scorer, Tyler Ongwae, posting a total of 25 points, Moran's faded in the final two quarters.

Moran's held their nerves in the second quarter to tie the game on 39-39, however the Kenyans ran out of steam as the West Africans took advantage to win the rest of the intervals; 24-26 and 54-60.

In another Group C encounter, highly ranked Nigeria beat Mali 88-71 to announce their intent in the ongoing Afro basket Championship.

Kenya returns to the court at the Kigali Arena against the Nigerians on Thursday at 2.00PM Kenyan time.

A win against the fancied Nigerians would revive Kenya’s hopes of cruising past the group stage, going to the last match on Friday against Mali.

Morans head coach Liz Mills wrote history as the first ever woman head coach in the history of FIBA Afro basket.

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