Morans’ chemistry still intact despite late arrivals: Owuor
Head coach of Kenya’s national men’s basketball team Cliff Owuor is confident that the side’s chemistry will not be affected by the late arrival of some of the key players as the side prepares for the Afrobasket qualifiers scheduled for November 25-29 in Kigali, Rwanda.
Owuor currently has 12 players in non-residential camp with six more expected to arrive before the team leaves for Kigali.
The Morans are expected to travel three days to to kick-off due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Expected to link up with the team this week are US-based Ronnie Gundo, debutant Preston Bungei who plies his trade in Australia and can play as a shooting guard as well as a small forward.
Team’s centre player Tom ‘Bush’ Wamukota and Australian based Desmond Owili are also expected this week.
However, Denmark-based Tyler Ongwae, who missed the January pre-qualifier, and another debutant, power forward Joel Awich, are scheduled to link up with the team on November 21, just days to the competition jump off in Rwanda.
“These are players that have been in the team before and know what is expected of them.
As for the debutants and the late arrivals who won’t have much time to train with us, we are in constant conversation with them and they understand what to work on before linking up with the team.
I am not worried about the team chemistry. We are putting in the work to be ready for the task ahead,” said the tactician.
Currently in training is Algeria-based Ariel Okal, Ulinzi Warriors’ quartet of Eric Mutoro, Victor Bosire, Joseph Khaemba and James Mwangi who is making a return to the team after missing out in the January pre-qualifier matches.
Others are Thunder’s Griffins Ligare, the team captain, his teammate Faheem Juma who was an unused substitute at the Afro-CAN competition in Mali and was part of the final 12 at the pre-qualifiers.
Others include Victor ‘Electric’ Ochieng of Equity, the Kenya Ports Authority’s (KPA) duo of Valentine Nyakinda and Victor Odendo and Strathmore’s Fidel Okoth.
Also training with the team is Ken Wachira who was initially not called up.
Unlike in normal circumstances where the team would have been whittled down to 15 as they begin residential training, the technical bench will retain all players until the final 12 are named as a precaution for any Covid-19 positive cases that might affect the team.
Meanwhile, a management board, constituted in September, has been given the mandate to run the national teams for the next four years.
Chaired by Thomas Kwaka, popularly known as BigTed, the board will craft and operationalise a roadmap to facilitate the national teams’ effective participation in international tournaments.