Angola holds off Kenya in a close match

By sportsnewsarena correspondent
Sep 23, 2021
  • Kenya's Hilda Luvandwa dribbles the ball during their match against Angola. kenya lost 39-45.(Photo:SNA)

Defending champions Angola took advantage of their experience to overcome a spirited Kenyan side in a low scoring pool Afrobasket match 45- 39 on Monday in Maputo, Mozambique.

The third loss condemned Kenya to the bottom of the pool and must now fight to win its last two matches against Mali and Cape Verde to keep alive their mathematical chance of qualifying for the quarter-finals.

Coach Ronnie Owino’s zone countered the Angolans with a simple adjustment in the defense shifting to zone and it worked as they led 16-17 at half time against the fancied Angolans.

Rose Ouma was hot from the start and averaged a team high 11 points as Angela Okoth chipped in 7 and Silalei Shani added 6 and 7 rebounds.

“The fact that we were playing the defending champions was enough incentive to play and raise the level of the game and step up to their game. We have a biting chance of making the quarters as it is not enough to play and lose,” said Owino after the close encounter.

Kenyans relentlessly attacked the ring, dominated the court and managed to lead 15-11 with Shani sinking in a three pointer in the 7th minute. Clarisse Mpaka who finished with 14 points helped the Angolans who won most of the battle for loose balls at 16-17.

The third quarter was evenly contested as the Angolans stepped up the fight after a rather laidback first half.

“First I congratulate the Kenyan team for the fight. I think my players underrated the Kenyans and that affected the team and what should have been an easy game turned out as we didn’t expect,” offered Anibal Moreira the Angolan coach, who found themselves trailing for most of the game anad struggled to tie the third quarter 31-31.

The Angolans took advantage of their tiring opponents with Cristin Mauricio adding 13 points in the game to ensure the southern Africans win their third game after dominating victories against Nigeria and Cape Verde

“Am more worried on the free throws not so much on the loose passes and the slow rebounds. Angolan’s outside shooting wasn’t that good,” offered Owino.

Kenya next plays Mali on Tuesday. 

Collated results: Monday- Cape Verde 39 Cameroon62, Zimbabwe 45 Senegal 123, Angola 45 Kenya 39.

Sunday:Mozambique 117 Zimbabwe 28

SaturdayNigeria 74 Kenya 49,Zimbabwe 66 Algeria 73,  Mali 64 Cameroon 67,  Cape Verde 51 Angola 76, Egypt 53 Mozambique 105, Senegal 50 Cote d'Ivoire 35

Friday -Egypt 69 Senegal 100,Mali 73 Cape Verde 62,Cameroon 61 Kenya 39, Angola 60 Nigeria 46, Cote d'Ivoire 56 Algeria 48