Tuesday, August 1
•Angola 69-71 Guinea
•Egypt 60-71 Senegal
•Mozambique 70-48 Ivory Coast.
•Uganda 78-62 DR Congo
Wednesday, August 2
•Cameroon Vs Senegal, 1pm
•Mali Vs Guinea, 4pm
•Rwanda Vs Uganda, 7pm
•Nigeria Vs Mozambique, 10pm
Uganda Women’s national basketball team, the Gazelles, will face hosts Rwanda on Wednesday in the Quarterfinals of the 2023 FIBA Women Afrobasket in Kigali.
It’s no rest for the Gazelles who come into this game a night after eliminating DR Congo.
And the celebrations will be muted for the Gazelles who will now switch focus to the huge task at hand.
Against DR Congo, the Gazelles had a slow start and needed a second half blitz to storm their ever first quarterfinal.
“I am super happy because we keep doing history for the national team and country,” said Gazelles Spanish coach Alberto Antuna reflecting on the DR Congo win.
“I was telling the Girls that we need to realise what we are doing and also how difficult it is to win these kind of games, how Guinea won Angola, how Senegal and Egypt was a difficult game, so to play these kind of games, its not easy to win kind of tournament.
“We really need to appreciate what we did. Pressure was really big. We have nine or 10 players of 21-22 years, while some are playing locally in Uganda.”
Against DR Congo, the Gazelles made 25 turnovers and collected just 13 points off the bench, two areas they need to improve.
The team also missed easy baskets and were at times bullied on boards.
In all Uganda’s games, including the loss to Mali and stunning win over Senegal, the Gazelles felt like a home side because of the many Uganda fans.
But against Rwanda, the host nation, it’s going to be a different story in a game where Country’s president Paul Kagame is expected to attend.
What To Expect Against Rwanda?
Earlier this year, Rwanda lost all their four games at Zone V Championship in Kampala including a 78-70 loss against the Gazelles.
But they have a totally different team at this tournament. They qualified as hosts, making a return to this stage for a third time after previous back-to-back appearances in 2009 in Madagascar and 2011 in Mali.
They topped their Group A to go through directly to the Quaterfinals and didn’t have to go through the playoffs like the Gazelles.
They started with a 64-35 win over Ivory Coast before falling 68-74 in Overtime against Angola.
Distiney Promise Philoxy and Janai Crooms Robertson, the latter who plays for Providence College, have been their best players so far, averaging 16 and 15 points respectively.
A place in the semifinals is up for grabs, with winner between defending champions Nigeria and Mozambique awaits.
Reaching the final four is a huge milestone itself, and those semifinalists are at times guaranteed of an automatic qualification to the next Women Afrobasket tournament.
And later on, the two finalists will qualify for FIBA Women’s Olympic Qualifying Tournament due next year in February.
How to Watch – The game will be live on Sports Premium (Star Times).
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