Basketball coaches have labeled the just ended CRDB Taifa Cup a good platform for the young players to showcase their talents and get exposed.
Speaking at different intervals, the coaches said that they are happy to see a big number of young players, some of whom have made their first appearance in the elite tournament, showcasing their talents in scoring, rebound cvatching and making offensive and defensive approaches of the speedy game.
Dennis Semiyono, the head coach of Kilimanjaro team said despite his side being eliminated in the group stage, his boys have got enough experience and he is optimistic that the squad will come to light in the next tournament.
“ We had a two-month training back home to get ready for the event, but we were not lucky enough to sail through to the next level, but we got something very special ,”
“We are going to keep playing as hard as we can to make sure that we come a different side in the next tournament,”said Semiyono.
“ What is more important for my boys was to learn from other players because playing in the CRDB Taifa Cup was the best way to practice and for the team with young basketballers like Mtwara, it poses a big lesson to work on our weakness and move ahead,” said Mtwara coach, Ibrahim Msami, whose side also lost in group stages.
Tanga’s head coach, Riziki Mgude, alias ‘Kochibago’ said that every team had shown a great potential, despite not making it to the finals.
Mazinda Malanja, who coaches Kigoma, said that his team has been drastically improving from the tournament, after their two-year experience.
“We had a tough going and could not make among the top finishers, but we have learnt a big lesson, and that is knowing different approaches of the games,”
“Having more than 600 players at one pool is a much better for the players because they will improve to reach their full potential,” he said.
The two-week tournament that was sponsored by CRDB bank, was expected to climax last evening whereby Mbeya were expected to play Temeke in the men’s final as Temeke were expected to play hosts, Dodoma in the women’s discipline
To qualify to the finals, Temeke (men) beat Ilala Ilala by 74-54 with Amin Mkosa scoring 23 points and grabbing seven rebounds.
Mbeya also beat songwe by 85-79 with Baraka Sadick claiming 30 points, four rebounds and three assists.
Temeke (women) whipped Unguja by 66-64 with Upendo Adrian scoring 23 points, grabbing two rebounds, three steals and one assist.
Hosts Dodoma made it to the finals after thumping CRDB Youth 81-56 with Evaline Mihayo scoring 23 points and grabbed nine rebounds.