Ulinzi eye Gold after Uganda win in Military games

By francis marangu
Aug 13, 2021
  • Ulinzi Warriors Bernard Mafutu dribbles past Uganda Moses Muhimiza.(Photo by Shutterspeed)

A change of strategy in the second quarter nearly cost Kenya control of the proceedings in their 68-57 win over Uganda in an EAC Military Games basketball match played on Tuesday at the Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani gymnasium.

The win puts Kenya in a good position of claiming gold with only one match against Tanzania remaining. Kenya started off well winning the first quarter 15-6 thanks to the man-to-man approach.

The strategy restricted their play around the three-point line to help contain Uganda’s main shooter Kaviiri Cyrus who was scoring baskets at ease.

However, things turned nasty in the second quarter when the technical bench decided to change gears for a fast flowing match.

As the local boys led 19-12 deep into the quarter, they shifted to the zone defense strategy but it backfired.

Uganda had more attacking room and managed to level the scores to 23-23 as the quarter progressed. Uganda won the quarter 17-11 but Kenya led 26-23 at the breather.

With only three point advantage, it was going back to the drawing board for Kenya and they shifted gears to a man defense strategy in the third and fourth quarters.

This was inevitable considering that most of the Kenyan players could not spot the opponents easily leading to many fouls.

The strategy worked very well as Kenya carried home the third quarter 20-12 for an eleven points advantage.

They managed to shield the gap with the fourth quarter ending on a 22-22 tie. Victor Odendo top scored for Kenya with 17 points grabbing three defensive rebounds, nine steals and two assists.

William Ochieng added 14 points with seven defensive rebounds and two steals while Bernard Mufutu had 12 points and two defensive rebounds. Kaviiri top scored for Uganda with 18 points.

Kenya remained on course to retaining the handball title after a 46-32 win over Rwanda in their third match at the Nyayo National Stadium. Kenya led 21-12 at halftime and had Harold Mumbo scoring ten goals. Uganda has already lost the football title after playing to a 0-0 draw with Burundi in their last match.

They have five points and with Kenya yet to play one match and standing at seven points, they have no mathematical chance of reclaiming the gold they won in Burundi 2011.