KIGOMA on Tuesday tested their first ever CRDB Taifa Cup’s victory after defeating Simiyu 58-50 in thrilling encounter held here at Chinangali courts.
The club’s head coach, Mazinda Malanja was relieved with the victory considering the fact that his boys lost three matches consecutively prior to their match with Simiyu..
Kigoma recently lost to Manyara, who won by 67-54 over the weekend. They also lost battles to Coast and Mwanza.
“The match was quite tough because each side was looking for a come back’s consolation victory after losing previous matches,” said Malanja. Kigoma will today have another test against Mbeya.
Simiyu, who consecutively hosted the previous two editions of the annual tournament, were looking for a comeback after their two-point defeat loss to Mwanza.
“We lost to Mwanza and our win against Kigoma could have revived our hopes, but things did not work out for us,” said Simiyu head coach, George Magola.
‘We did not fully utilise the ‘freethrows’ to earn points as most of our last minute targets went off,” said Magola.
Simiyu also lost other matches to Coast, but had a consolation win over Manyara.
In their Tuesday’s battle, Kigoma won the first quarter by 21-15 and the second quarter also ended at 20-8 at their favour. The third quarter went to Simiyu to win by 15-5 as the last quarter ended to a 12-12 barren draw.
In another match, Ilala (men) beat Rukwa by 70-61 in a closely contested match while Tanga also outsmarted Mtwara by 88-53 points.
Temeke were, in another development, awarded a walkover (two points) over Singida who did not show up at court B for their match.
There are a total of 24 men teams in the event as 12 women sides are battling it out for their side.
CRDB bank are the main sponsors while other co- sponsors include Sanlam and Mayfair Insurance.
The draw for the team teams has the following teams in the groups.
Group A teams are Ilala, Kilimanjaro, Tables, Rukwa and Shinyanga Katavi.
Group B has Mbeya, Mwanza, Manyara, Kigoma, Coast and Kinondoni.
Group C has Songwe, Dodoma, Morogoro, CRDB Youth (featuring the Under-19 team) , Tanga and Mtwara.
Group D has Temeke, Arusha, Iringa, Singida, Pemba and Unguja.
The women teams in the groups are as follows.
Group A has Ilala, Iringa, Morogoro and Coast.
Group B has Temeke, Dodoma, Arusha and Singida while group C has Mbeya, Unguja, CRDB Youth (featuring the Under-19 players) and Tanga
Each group shall produce two teams to the quarterfinals. The teams which have already secured tickets to the quarterfinals are Rukwa, Ilala (men) from Group A.
Group D has Temele while in the women’s category; Coast and Mwanza have gone through as Group B has Temeke as Dodoma are struggling to make an entry.