Espoir hope to extend win against ISIU

REIGNING champions Espoir basketball club are upbeat ahead of their second Zone V championship encounter against Kenyan champions ISIU due this morning in Bujumbura, Burundi.
Arstide Mugabe will be pivotal for Espoir when they take on Kenya's ISIU today. He scored 14 points alone in the opening game. The New Times / Courtesy.
Arstide Mugabe will be pivotal for Espoir when they take on Kenya's ISIU today. He scored 14 points alone in the opening game. The New Times / Courtesy.

Zone V Basketball
Men, Today
USIU     vs.     Espoir
Vijana     vs.     Riham Warriors
Women
 APR     vs.     Don Bosco
Berco Stars     vs.     KCCA

REIGNING champions Espoir basketball club are upbeat ahead of their second Zone V championship encounter against Kenyan champions ISIU due this morning in Bujumbura, Burundi.

The defending champions, who ripped hosts Urunani 60-41 in the opener, are eager to pick up from where they left off last year, when they take on ISIU.

Head Coach Jean Bahufite said yesterday that his team is ready to face any challenge.

“This is a big game and we need to have stronger mentality to be able to win it. The players are confident after winning the first game and it’s only focus which is needed in order to continue doing better and be able to retain the title,” added Bahufite.

Espoir new signing forward Olivier Shyaka is keen to win his first big medal with defending champions.

He said yesterday, “We are all hungry for success and we want to do our best and ensure that we successfully defend our title,”

In the opening game, Espoir dominated proceedings, winning all quarters 15-13, 12-7, 15-11 and 18-10 to garner an overall 60-44 victory.  Last year’s tournament‘s 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 with Lionel Hakizimina adding 8 points to help the team register the first win of the tournament.

Tanzania’s Vijana will take on Uganda’s Riham Warriors in the other men’s fixture while APR, who lost their opening match against Les Gazelles of Burundi 35-50, take on Don Bosco of Tanzania in the first match of the women’s category.

Berco stars of Tanzania will face Uganda’s KCCA in the other women’s fixture.

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