Team Uganda overcame a number of adversities to secure a series of podium finishes at the three-day All Africa Pool Championships in South Africa.
With an interim Pool Association of Uganda committee entering both male and female teams, Uganda garnered three team silvers and one gold across the two formats of the competition for a combined 15000 Rands (Shs3.8m) in Mpumalanga at the weekend.
The She Pool Cranes came top of the more familiar Blackball format after defeating Zimbabwe 13-8 in the final.
It equates to their feat of 2016 when they won on home soil at Lugogo Indoor Stadium. “We are really grateful to have won this,” said jubilant captain Faith Nganda Amina.
“That means we did not travel for nothing. We have really come a long way to win this Championship,” the She Pool Cranes’ skipper went on.
The team’s best player in the format was Ritah Nimusiima who won all her five frames as Uganda won the best-of-13 encounter. “Training and determination. We were determined to do it and it paid off,” added Nganda. In the ladies blackball singles’, Vicky Namuyanja grabbed silver after she had been edged by South African Nicola Rossouw 5-4 in the best-of-five final. Nganda came third after white-washing home girl Flatta Moyo 4-0.
The She Pool Cranes had earlier come second behind South Africa in the new Chinese Eight-ball format.
Like them, the Pool Cranes too lost 6-3 to the hosts in the Eight-ball final. Despite that, Ugandan Rukia Naiga pocketed 3000 Rands (Shs760,000) for second place after losing 5-0 to Rossouw in the final.
Pool Cranes’ debutant Caesar Chandiga scooped bronze in the Eight-ball individual class after defeating Zimbabwean Tendai Mubalwa 4-2.
“I have just been training. When I started train, results came through,” said Chandiga who started the game four years ago in Lira. “I thank Jonan Turigye who has helped me a lot and the other is our coach Nathan Bwankosya.”
Lesotho did not turn up while Somalia’s team died before departure after a landmine blew them.