We were poor against Rwanda, Lionesses coach Opel admits


We were poor against Rwanda, Lionesses coach Opel admits

In Summary

  • Kenya play their second match from 4pm today against South Sudan will tackle Egypt from 7pm.
  • The qualifiers are being played in a round-robin format, before proceeding to semi-finals on Friday, followed by third place play-off and the final on Saturday.
  • The FIBA 2021 Women Afrobasket Championship will be held in Cameroon from 17th to 26th September.

The national women’s basketball team assistant head coach Mike Opel admits they played poorly and need to improve in the remaining matches after they lost 77-45 to host team Rwanda in their opening match of the FIBA Women’s Afrobasket Zone Five  Qualifiers played  at the Kigali Arena on Monday.

Rwanda dominated scoring 33-30 and 44-15 in the first and second half respectively.

“It was a tough game, we started off well but the players didn’t execute well, we had a lot of turnovers and generally we didn’t play well but we shall be working on it as we focus on our next match,” Opel said.

Team captain Rose Atieno Ouma says the team did not put the effort required.

“We didn’t execute the way we should have, they changed the way they played on us but we failed to adjust accordingly. We rushed a bit on our possessions and I can’t blame the team chemistry,” she said.

On his part, Rwanda head coach Cheikh Sarr said they were nervous at first but managed to settle in the game.

“It was a tough game facing a strong and physical team like Kenya. We started to struggle and suffered nervousness playing at home but they stepped up after the first five minutes,” Sarr said.

Rwanda captain Tierra Henderson said they were able to execute their game plan.

“We started slowly but as the game went on we were able to execute the things we had worked on in training and it was a tough match for us despite winning,” she said.

In another match, new comers South Sudan suffered a 95-65 defeat to experienced Egypt.

Kenya play their second match from 4pm today against South Sudan will tackle Egypt from 7pm.

The qualifiers, which ends Saturday, will see the four countries battle for the sole ticket reserved for the Zone Five countries in Africa’s biggest tournament set for September in Cameroon.

The qualifiers are being played in a round-robin format, before proceeding to semi-finals on Friday, followed by third place play-off and the final on Saturday.

The FIBA 2021 Women Afrobasket Championship will be held in Cameroon from 17th to 26th September.

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Story By Dennis Kamariki
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