City Oilers turn attention to BAL

Soon after celebrating their eight successive Tusker Lite National Basketball League title, City Oilers will seek a return to the Basketball Africa League. PHOTO/JOHN BATANUDDE 

What you need to know:

Ethiopia’s Hawassa City BBC, home team Army Basket Club and Matero Magic of Zambia are the other teams in Group C.

Two seasons of the Basketball Africa League have been played without representation from Uganda.

City Oilers have failed to get into the final 12 on two occasions and will be hoping to change that this year.

That journey starts today in Dar es Salam, Tanzania with the first phase of qualifiers for Group C, where Oilers have Burundi’s Urunani as the biggest threat.

Ethiopia’s Hawassa City BBC, home team Army Basket Club and Matero Magic of Zambia are the other teams in Group C.

The eight-time Ugandan champions left for Tanzania Monday morning after four days of training at the Lugogo Indoor Stadium.

Roebuck Germine and Petty Trey Martel have been added to the team. The two American based players are expected to add experience to Mandy Juruni’s side.

Roebuck is a a 6’5” forward who has played in the US, Portugal and Nicaragua while Trey has played for West Alabama and Stillman Tigers.

Thin

It is a thin squad for Oilers in the first round. Jimmy Enabu got injured during the finals and is yet to recover while Ruai Luak moved to Russia last week. John Dombo, Davis Siagi and Emmanuel Okumu have all been left out.

Juruni will rely on just nine players to progress to the Elite 16.

“Nine players are good for me,” Juruni told this paper before the team left.

“We are taking nine well trained assassins,” he, jokingly added.

Oilers must finish in the top two of the group to progress to the next round of qualifiers. The top two from the other groups will also form the Elite 16 from which the to six make it to the 2023 BAL season.

Champions from Angola, Egypt, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, and Tunisia do not have to go through the qualifiers.

Basketball Africa League Qualifiers

Group C

Hawassa City BBC, Army Basket Club, Matero Magic, City Oilers

Oilers team

Tonny Drileba, Ben Komakech, Ivan Muhwezi, James Okello, Caeser Kizito, Francis Azolibe, Petty Tray Martel, Roebuck Jr Germine, Mer Maker Moses

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