B-ball schools league ends on high note

Lesotho Times - - Sport - Mikia Kalati

THE Le­sotho Bas­ket­ball As­so­ci­a­tion (LBA) has com­mended the just-ended high school bas­ket­ball tour­na­ment for its role in fos­ter­ing the growth of the sport in the coun­try.

The tour­na­ment that started with 40 schools in March came to an end on Sun­day with Christ the King High School and Ma­bathoana High School crowned cham­pi­ons in the male and fe­male cat­e­gories re­spec­tively.

CK, as Christ the King is pop­u­larly known, de­feated Sa­cred Heart 38-21 in the fi­nal, while Ma­bathoana edged St Stephens 22-20 in the fe­male fi­nal.

In an in­ter­view with the Le­sotho Times this week, LBA pub­lic re­la­tions of­fi­cer, Ratšolo Molupe, said the high school tour­ney was a big suc­cess and raised the stan­dards of the sport in the Moun­tain King­dom to an­other level.

“This com­pe­ti­tion has be­come very im­por­tant be­cause the core of our young play­ers are found at the high school level,” Molupe said.

“It was sat­is­fy­ing to have schools from as far afield as Thaba-tseka par­tic­i­pat­ing in this year’s edi­tion of the tour­na­ment, which was not the case in years past. So it shows there is mas­sive growth.”

He said the com­pe­ti­tion had also be­come a good scout­ing ground for the as­so­ci­a­tion’s top flight clubs.

“This com­pe­ti­tion has be­come a good plat­form for our big teams to iden­tify bud­ding ta­lent that can bol­ster their squads,” said the LBA pub­li­cist.

“They at­tend matches, scout for young ta­lent and de­velop it into a fin­ished prod­uct.

“That, for me, shows we are go­ing some­where and it is al­ways very good for con­ti­nu­ity and the growth of young play­ers.”

Molupe also ex­pressed grat­i­tude to fast food restau­rant chain KFC for spon­sor­ing the tour­na­ment.

“We are grate­ful to KFC for spon­sor­ing the tour­na­ment by pro­vid­ing medals and sport­ing at­tire to the eight teams that made it to the last round of the com­pe­ti­tion,” he said.

“It is no se­cret we had fi­nan­cial strug­gles with­out spon­sors and hav­ing to de­pend on the small sub­ven­tion from the gov­ern­ment.”

“Hav­ing KFC on board re­ally made life easy for us as they gave play­ing at­tire and bought medals for the win­ning teams as well as the play­ers.”

Molupe added: “We now await the start of our new bas­ket­ball league that will get un­der­way in Septem­ber and will be fol­lowed by two other tour­na­ments in the In­de­pen­dence Cup and the Sum­mer Slam that will fea­ture an in­ter­na­tional team.”

LBA pub­lic re­la­tions of­fi­cer Ratšolo Molupe.

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