City Oilers still confident despite Nam Blazers loss

Daniel Monoja of Nam Blazers tries to go past John Dombo of City Oilers during the Fuba National Basketball  League game that the Nam Blazers won at Lugogo indoor stadium. PHOTO/FILE

What you need to know:

  • Basketball. Oilers reminded everyone how good a team they are by making the stacked Blazers work for the win.

In the last two weeks, City Oilers have had to bounce back from defeat and every time they did it with a commanding statement.

After the loss to KIU Titans, the seven-time champions got back to winning ways by demolishing Falcons 122-74 and sending them back to division one.

Next was another loss that came at the hands of the highly rated Namuwongo Blazers last Friday.

The 61-63 loss was the Oilers’ fourth of the season and their response was another big win, 100-66 over KCCA Panthers Sunday night.

“We always have to learn from the previous game and be better,” Oilers’ head coach Mandy Juruni told Monitor.

With the team underhanded due to injuries in their camp, the loss to a deep Blazers roster was somewhat expected.

But, not in the manner it came. If anything, the Oilers reminded everyone how good a team they are by making the stacked Blazers work for the win.

“We have had so many positives from a few days back. I think we should be back on top of our game in two weeks’ time,” Juruni added.

“We still need to take care of the ball better, to get tougher.

“We also need to get healthy.”

Lack of practice 

When the Silverbacks backs team was named for camp in Egypt ahead of the Fiba World Cup Qualifiers, four players were named from the Oilers’ camp.

Add to them Andrew Tendo, the assistant coach, who joined the team for camp and Juruni for the tournament in Kigali.

That left Oilers out of action for close to a month and upon return, both James Okello and Tonny Drileba had picked injuries.

“The lack of practice and playing competitively  for a month set us back a bit plus the injuries but we are working hard towards getting back,” Juruni revealed.

Refs must be better 

Each and every coach you interact with points to the fact that the refereeing can and must improve as the season goes on. Juruni is no different.

“I have been watching the film of the game and I can say 60% of us are playing with low energy because the refs were so terrible, in particular, one ref,”

“Azolibe had five fouls and four of those were not really fouls.”

The Nigerian’s foul trouble had the Oilers in a spot of bother as they struggled to deal with a significantly bigger Blazers line up.
“It’s not an excuse but the refs have to manage the games better otherwise they are killing the progress of our game.”

With a 15-4 record, the defending champions remain top of the log and will be looking to improve that when they take on JKL Dolphins tonight.


W -Angels vs. KIU Rangers -6.30pm
M -JKL vs. City Oilers -8.30pm