Basketball Paying Price of Lugogo Arena Mix-Up

Ordinarily, basketball contests are supposed to be settled on the court but the recent unpredictable weather at the open YMCA grounds is cause for concern for the sport’s governing body, writes Felix Eupal.

Wednesday night was supposed to be a day of reckoning for City Oilers and A1 Challenge as they aimed to claw back a 0-2 deficit in the play-off semis. The two teams trail UCU Canons and KCCA Leopards respectively. However, a few minutes past 6pm, the heavens let loose and it rained endlessly for close to two hours, forcing Fuba to postpone the games.

All the hype and preparations went to waste for the four teams and they have to refocus for this evening at Lugogo arena. This is the second time this month that rain has forced the abandonment of games.

A week ago, Canons trailed Oilers by nine points with just seven minutes left on the clock before the rain intervened. To compound the situation, Fuba had no plan B due to the unavailability of Lugogo arena, where fans hoped the remaining seven minutes would be played.

Oilers’ fans were clearly devastated because everything seemed to be going their way. Sunday Manano, the Fuba technical committee chairman, says that by the time Fuba got clearance to use the arena, other sports disciplines had booked the venue in aance.

In fact, a close scrutiny of the arena schedule doesn’t make good reading for Fuba. Basketball is now left with only five match days, the others being booked by the table tennis. Besides this weekend, Fuba can only use the venue on December 14-16.

This means the first five games to be played at YMCA grounds will be at the mercy of the weather. This leaves Fuba’s work cut out to ensure that that they can have the indoor fully for the next season because such disruptions scare away potential sponsors, yet the federation needs them to nurse its shoestring budget.

Source : The Observer

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