Basketball coach targets podium finish at Lions Cup

The national 3X3 basketball side PIC: KENNEDY RAMOKONE
The national 3X3 basketball side PIC: KENNEDY RAMOKONE

The 3x3 basketball teams coach, Tiro ‘Tnyse’ Serumola is targeting a podium finish at the IBF Under-18 3x3 Young Lions Cup finals to be held tomorrow (Saturday) at the Stanbic Bank Piazza (Molapo Crossing).

Speaking to Mmegi Sport on Wednesday, Serumola expressed his satisfaction in the teams’ weeklong training. 

Serumola has assembled men and women teams consisting of four players each. The teams started training on January 1, 2019 and went into camp on Saturday.Serumola backs the experience in both teams, but bemoaned lack of physical presence in the squads.

“We never had any problem with training. Preparations have been going very well. We are a small team. We have a few problems. We would talk about (the) height (of players), but we have a very experienced team. Some of the players were here during the last tournament while the girls are part of the national team. Looking at both teams, we are all good.”

“It is a squad that has a lot of experience and we see ourselves getting a medal. I’m looking at what we have. We have players that have played internationally before, which is a good evolution for us.

“At the moment, I would say Zimbabwe and Zambia are our main competitors. We know them from being our neighbours, so we have been preparing, looking at how we can beat these two teams,” Serumola said.

The tournament was scheduled to be held last December, but was postponed due to the Region V Youth Games that were held in the capital city last year.

Speaking at a press briefing held in Gaborone on Wednesday, Botswana Basketball Association (BBA) president, Boineelo Hardy said the games will leave a lasting legacy.

She said the BBA would benefit balls, an umpire-training programme and an inaugural countrywide 3x3 basketball programme.

“There will be training of referees on the sidelines of the games. The trainee referees will also officiate alongside elite referees at the tournament. 

“For the first time we will have a countrywide programme that we will educate players about 3x3 basketball with.  We have had games in Lobatse, Gaborone, Francistown amongst other places, which was a good start but this time this will be countrywide,” she said.

Botswana will host the competition for the second time after the 2017 edition. The local teams will compete for the title with Lesotho, Kingdom of Eswatini, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Namibia, Comoros, Seychelles and Madagascar.

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