The Ministry of Sports and Culture will give maximum support to the national U16 boys’ basketball team as it continues preparations for the 2017 FIBA Africa Under-16 Championships, the Director of Sports in the ministry, Emmanuel Bugingo, has said.
Rwanda will represent Zone V at the biennial event scheduled for July 13-22 in Vacoas-Phoenix, Mauritius after successfully defending their title last week in Mombasa, Kenya.
Bugingo made the pledge when meeting the boys and girls teams at Galaxy Hotel where he congratulated them and promised that the ministry is ready to facilitate the team so that they can repeat the same feat in Mauritius.
“On behalf of the Government, I would like to congratulate you on this triumph, you left here with a mission, and you have accomplished it, I believe winning the title was not a surprise to you because you put in effort, both physically and mentally,” said Bugingo.
He, however, cautioned them: “This is the start of the real journey in your career, you will find Afrobasket completely different with Zone V, which calls for extra preparations and, in that regard, the ministry is ready to facilitate you.”
Rwanda (boys) secured the ticket for the second time in a row after finishing unbeaten in four games that attracted Tanzania and hosts Kenya, with all teams playing each other twice.
The girls’ team finished second behind Egypt, who will represent Zone V in Mauritius.
The team will begin training for the Afrobasket tournament next week, according to a tentative programme.
The competition will also serve as a qualifier for the 2018 FIBA U-17 Basketball World Championships, which will be held in Argentina.