All is set for the 2019 Federation of International Basketball Association (FIBA) 3X3 Africa Cup at Hockey grounds, Lugogo, in a three-day event from November 8-10.
Hosts Uganda have entered four teams – Men, Women, U18 boys and girls.
The event has attracted about 12 countries with over 190 athletes set to to take part.
The tournament is being hosted in Kampala after the inaugural two editions were held in Lome, Togo – Uganda signed a three year contract with FIBA to host the event from 2019 to 2021.
Uganda, residing at Arch Hotel in Ntinda, will be banking on home advantage to win this year’s edition after coming close in the past two.
“Well, we need to see the other teams first. What is important is that we have been preparing amidst various challenges so we are hopeful,” said Coach Nicholas Natuhereza.
“Playing at home is always extra motivation but also comes with a lot of pressure.”
Uganda’s women team is seeded no.1 in Africa and clinched finished third and fifth in 2017 and 2018 respectively.
Mali, who have won the first two editions, will be the team to beat but have registered different faces from one that won last year’s title. Placed in Pool B, Mali will face tough resistance from Egypt.
Uganda’s women – Ekone Brenda, Zainah Lokwameri, Hope Akello and Rita Imanishimwe – have been placed in Pool A alongside Nigeria and rivals Kenya with the top two teams from each pool advance to the semis.
The Silverbacks team, beaten finalists last year, have to tussle it out alongside Mauritius and Nigeria.
With last year’s winners Ivory Coast not coming to Kampala, Uganda will fancy their chances on home soil.
Niger who are number one seeds and seed number two Egypt are the other teams to watch out for.
Mark Opio Okidi