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Kenya basketballers eligible but have not travelled to Morocco

THE Team Kenya men and women basketball (3-on-3) squads were still in Nairobi on Monday afternoon without a clear word from their leaders whether they will travel to Morocco for the 12th African Games.
By their own assessment, team members of this first-time discipline at the African Games, think they are a serious medal prospect if they travel to Morocco. Initial invitation to the tournament was not through a play-off but a ranking system and Kenya, at No. 13, missed out of the proposed 12-team event.

Fidel Okoth of Strathmore University, a Team Kenya 3-on-3 basketball mainstay hopes to eventually play in Morocco. Photo/MOHAMMED AMIN

Fidel Okoth of Strathmore University, a Team Kenya men’s 3-on-3 basketball mainstay hopes to eventually play in Morocco. Photo/MOHAMMED AMIN

However, well ahead of the start, organisers announced the withdrawal of several teams meaning Kenya earned a slot in replacement. But the team has been waiting for the Team Kenya leaders to confirm their entry.
A Voice of Sport investigation confirmed that organisers of the event, the local Moroccan Basketball Federation, were waiting for the “arrived” teams, before they could make a draw and fixtures.
Their statement:
[From] The Morocco National Basketball:
“Team 3-on-3 basketball for the age group 23 years continues to prepare for the African Games in Rabat with Morocco men and women’s teams playing friendly preparation matches before the start (African Games) on August 21.

“The organising committee has not yet limited the number of teams participating in the draw of the (African Games) championship and will, after arrival and confirmation, meet teams to draw a programme.” But Kenya will have to have a representative physically present in Rabat during the team’s technical meeting on Tuesday.

Caroline Njeri Nduta, the talented African Nazarene University point-guard is in the Team Kenya 3-on-3 women’s basketball. Photo/MOHAMMED AMIN

Caroline Njeri Nduta, the talented African Nazarene University point-guard is in the Team Kenya women’s  3-on-3 basketball. Photo/MOHAMMED AMIN

Among those the Kenya teams at Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani, were hoping to receive a direction for the next steps were Team Kenya leaders already in Morocco, including head of the mission Ndiritu Gikaria and National Olympic Committee of Kenya (NOCK) secretary general Francis Mutuku.

At Kasarani, the teams were also hoping that Team Kenya deputy chief of mission, Shadrack Maluki, who is still in Nairobi on Monday after will work round the clock to make sure they arrive in Rabat in time for the start of the event.

The Kenya teams at Kasarani are:

WOMEN:
1 Christine Akinyi – (Kenya Ports Authority)
2 Daisy Ayodi – (Equity)
3 Caroline Njeri Nduta – (African Nazarene University)
4 Clara Chepchirchir – (Strathmore University)
Manager: Hilmi Ali (Kenya Basketball Federation Vice-Chairman)

MEN:
1 Salim Kisilu – (Ndejje University, Uganda)
2 Martin Buluma Ouma – (Ndejje University, Uganda)
3 George Darriel Omondi – (Strathmore University)
4 Fidel Okoth – Strathmore University)
Manager: Tonny Ochieng’ (Strathmore University Head Coach)

President Uhuru Kenyatta (2nd from right) hands Kenyan flag to Team Kenya captains Julius Yego (right), Mercy Moim (3rd from right) with chief executive officer Charles Nyaberi (2nd from left) and deputy chief de mission Shadrack Maluki (left) at State House, Nairobi on Monday, wishing them success at the 12th African Games in Rabat, Morocco. Below: President Uhuru is mobbed by Team Kenya members. Photo/MOHAMMED AMIN

President Uhuru Kenyatta (2nd from right) hands Kenyan flag to Team Kenya captains Julius Yego (right), Mercy Moim (3rd from right) with chief executive officer Charles Nyaberi (2nd from left) and deputy chief de mission Shadrack Maluki (left) at State House, Nairobi on Monday, wishing them success at the 12th African Games in Rabat, Morocco. Below: President Uhuru is mobbed by Team Kenya members. Below: Elated Team Kenya members hug President Uhuru. Photos/MOHAMMED AMIN

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