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Friday downpour washes out basketball league games

By Charles Mutebi

Added 21st October 2017 08:06 AM

This was the worst ending to Friday plot but that's the reality of local basketball at the moment

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National Basketball League (Postponed)

Women: KCCA v Javon

Men: Oilers v Warriors 

No money, no arena.

The underbelly of the National Basketball League (NBL) keeps raging against the progress of local hoops and this year it's been particularly nasty, forcing the cancellation and subsequent postponement of countless games as the Lugogo Indoor Stadium and the YMCA outdoor court have either been unavailable or unusable.

On Friday it was the latter as the highly anticipated meeting between NBL powerhouses City Oilers and Pemba Warriors was called off because the YMCA court was deemed unsafe after a late evening shower.

The day's opening game between the KCCA Leopards and Javon Ladies was also cancelled, with both matches due to be played on Tuesday... at Lugogo - tentatively to be certain.

For fans who had looked ahead to the Oilers - Warriors match-up all week, this was the worst ending to Friday plot but that's the reality of local basketball at the moment.

To be more precious, it's the reality of the local half of Ugandan hoops, the international half enjoying more prosperity at the moment.

The Uganda Silverbacks took part in their second consecutive Afrobasket Championship in September, winning plaudits as an emerging continental force.

Few of those observers would imagine the pressing conditions under which the game exists locally.

"We have done so much for the national teams and kind of neglected the local league, " vice president in charge of finance Robert Ssembajwe told New Vision Sport.

"The league is the heart of Ugandan basketball, we have to make it succeed."

The NBL has not had a substantive sponsor for four seasons now and last year FUBA's annual awards was not held for lack of a funder.

If Ugandan basketball were a plane, it’s currently flying with one wing. And without a sponsor or arena, it's not obvious how much Ambrose Tashobya FUBA's can do to rectify the NBL's travails.

Yet solutions are long overdue, the NBL bleeds deeply.

Sunday (YMCA)

Women

UCU v Nkumba

KCCA v Nkumba

Men

Falcons v JKL

UPDF v Our Saviour

UCU v Warriors

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