By Spy Uganda
Kampala: Uganda’s National Basketball team, ‘the Silverbacks’, have managed to travel to Angola for the FIBA World Cup qualifiers, overcoming the financial troubles that recently forced them to announce that they had cancelled participation.
A statement by the Federation of Uganda Basketball Associations (FUBA) on Wednesday, November 25, stated that they had failed to secure funds from the government to facilitate their trip to Benguela – Angola.
However, to the surprise of many, they announced on Thursday that they had left for Angola in the wee hours.
“FUBA had recently confirmed the team’s withdrawal from the tournament after failing to secure the funds from the government to facilitate the trip. However, FUBA President Nasser Sserunjogi held a meeting with State Minister for Sports Hon Hamson Obua and like they say the rest is history,” reads in part FUBA’s new statement.
In the qualifiers, Uganda will play against Mali, Cape Verde and Nigeria.
The competition gets underway on November 26.
Uganda will hope to build on recent Afrobasket success in Kigali where the team finished sixth overall.
The qualifiers are a pathway to determine the five African teams that will represent the continent at the 2023 FIBA World Cup to be held in Indonesia, Japan and the Philippines.
The Ugandan team that left for Angola for the qualifiers comprises nine home-based players and four foreign-based players; Brandon Davis, Eric Rwahwire, Womala Timothy and Robinson Opong.
Only Deng Geu, who recently joined Texas Legends, did not make the squad from the initial team that was summoned.
The Travelling Team
Players: Jimmy Enabu (City Oilers), Tonny Drilleba (City Oilers), Ivan Muhwezi (City Oilers), Fayed Bbale (UCU Canons), Peter Obleng (KIU Titans), Titus Lual Odeke (UCU Canons), James Okello (City Oilers), Abdihakim Ghedi (City Oilers), Ben Komakech (City Oilers), Brandon Davis (Barcelona, Germany), Eric Rwahwire (Hamilton Honey Badgers), Womala Timothy Emmanuel (Schwelm, Germany), Robinson Opong Odoch (unattached).
Officials: Arnold Katabi (Head of Delegation), Mandy Juruni Lutwama (Head coach), Andrew Tendo Ssenyondwa (Assistant Coach), Ram Nyakana Mpunga (Team Physio), Isaac Otuk Gabriel (Team Doctor).