Omondi calls for interaction between referees and coaches

Ndejje University Angels coach John Omondi takes to referees in a league game at YMCA. PHOTO/JOHN BATANUDDE 

What you need to know:

Wednesday night was a rollercoaster of emotions for the usually highly-charged Omondi.

Ndejje Angels head coach John Omondi is no stranger to technicals and ejections in Ugandan basketball.

As a former referee of the game now involved in full time coaching, the Kenyan has clashed with his former colleagues on the interpretation of the laws and the general handling of games.

Wednesday night was a rollercoaster of emotions for the usually highly-charged Omondi.

First, his team was in cruise control of proceedings against UCU Canons early in the first half, then came two quick technical fouls in his direction for an ejection. 

The Canons then attempted to come back after trailing the entire game but Ndejje had enough in the tank to close the game 76-72 and register only their third win of the season.

Omondi believes referees can do better by allowing interaction with coaches and not rushing into decisions.

“I think some referees have put it in their heads that ‘that one is going to complain’ and they are armed with authority,” Omondi told Daily Monitor after Wednesday’s game. 

“Refereeing is difficult and so is coaching, so we have to be able to interact for the good of the game,” he added. 

Omondi was ejected after twice complaining about calls he thought should have gone his way and had to watch the remainder of the game by peeping through one of the Lugogo Indoor Stadium doors. 

In his absence, Jackson Okiasi handled the game to the end.

“The game is for the players and fans to enjoy and we have to allow that to happen. A T is a very serious tool and should not be used all the time. No one is fighting the other after all.

“We are not angels. I might talk louder but don’t judge the tone, take the message. But those are work hazards and I will learn from it.”

James Obrack put in two clutch layups in the last minute of the game to seal the deal for Ndejje.

Christian Ndibu was the go-to man every time UCU paused any questions and his impressive double-double of 16 points and 12 rebounds came in handy for the Angels.

Obrack and Jonathan Oketch added 15 and 13 points respectively as Ndejje returned to winning ways.

For UCU, Peter Sifuma’s double-double of 27 points and 21 rebounds was not enough to overcome a sluggish start that was not helped by the generosity in turning the ball over 24 times on the night.

The Mukono-based outfit outrebounded Ndejje 60-38 but struggled to get stops in transition and ended up losing a second straight game in a space of two days, having fallen to City Oilers on Easter Monday. 

National Basketball League 



JKL 86-44 Nabisunsa 


Ndejje 76-72 UCU Canons