Op­ti­mism ahead of re­gional bas­ket­ball tour­ney

Lesotho Times - - Sport - Moorosi Tsiane

Le­sotho Bas­ket­ball as­so­ci­a­tion (LBA) pub­lic re­la­tions of­fi­cer, Rat­solo Molupe, says hav­ing many teams in the an­nual Swazi­land In­vi­ta­tional Tour­na­ment set for 24-26 June will en­hance Le­sotho’s chances to reach the fi­nals.

Le­sotho will be rep­re­sented by Li­chocha, kta all Stars and Bashana Ba heso (BBH) in the male cat­e­gories while kta all Stars, NUL Rovers and Shoot­ing Ri­fles will be com- pet­ing in the fe­male cat­e­gory.

Teams from Le­sotho, South africa, Mozam­bique, Zim­babwe, namibia, Zam­bia, Botswana and Swazi­land will take part in the event.

“The good thing about send­ing many teams to this in­ter­na­tional tour­na­ment is it in­creases our chances of mak­ing it to the knock­out stages or even the fi­nal. I know the com­pe­ti­tion will be very high but we also have good teams that can chal­lenge for hon­ors,” Molupe said.

Last year, Le­sotho was rep­re­sented by two male teams, Li­chocha and kta all Stars, while KTA and Shoot­ing Ri­fles play­ers com­bined to form the fe­male side.

“Last year, we only had three teams in that tour­na­ment and they all lost in the group stage but for­tu­nately, kta walked away with the most dis­ci­plined team and loy­alty awards.”

Molupe said the Swazi­land com­pe­ti­tion also helps the lo­cal league im­prove by giv­ing play­ers in­ter­na­tional ex­po­sure.

“The level of com­pe­ti­tion there is very high and the good thing is our play­ers get ex­po­sure which helps our league to be quite com­pet­i­tive. our league has been im­prov­ing over the past two years,” said Molupe.

“KTA was the first team to go there in 2013 and although they didn’t do well, the fol­low­ing year, they made it to the quar­ter­fi­nals. This shows we have teams that can go all the way.

“again, our play­ers learn so much when they go out there which like I said, help our game to grow.”

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