Urunani 41-60 Espoir
Les Gazelles 50-35 APR
Defending FIBA-Africa Zone V men’s champions Espoir kicked off their title defence with a 60-41 win over Burundi’s side Urunani on Monday. The championship started yesterday and runs until Saturday in Bujumbura, Burundi.
The Rwandan league champions, who left Kigali on Sunday, on the eve of the opening game, continued their impressive form as they walloped the team they beat 90-39 in last year’s final held in Kampala.
Last year’s tournament Most Valuable Player, Arstide Mugabe led Espoir’s charge with a game high 14 points and was ably supported by Congolese-born Bienvenue Ngandu, who scored 12 points and Lionel Hakizimina added 8 points to help the team register the first win of the tournament.
“We are very happy to win the first game and to beat them (Urunani )at their home ground after they beat us in Kigali two months ago in the 1994 Genocide memorial tournament final,” Espoir’s assistant coach Maxime Mwiseneza told Times Sport after yesterday’s game.
He added, “We controlled the game from the beginning up to the final whistle and we deserved to win, now the attention turns to Wednesday’s (tomorrow) match against Kenya’s Usiu.”
Meanwhile in the women’s category, Rwanda’s only representative APR lost 35-50 to Burundians Les Gazelles.
Espoir launch Zone V title defence with win