Peace upbeat, Chep doubtful

What you need to know:

  • The netball team in particular will be hoping to improve on their sixth place ranking at the 2018 edition but more importantly, they need to maintain their sixth place international ranking to qualify for the World Cup due next year in Cape Town, South Africa – otherwise they would have to do it through qualifiers in August. 

She Cranes goal getter Peace Proscovia says she is privileged to be named Team Uganda’s captain for a second time running ahead of the forthcoming Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, England. Proscovia doubles as the netball team captain and will still work with male and rugby counterpart Michael Wokorach, with whom they led Uganda at the last Games in Gold Coast in 2018, where the country had its best medal haul ever of three golds, one silver and two bronzes.

“I am really grateful for the opportunity because I did not expect it for a second time running,” Proscovia said.

“But I believe we both come with good experience from the last Commonwealth Games and will lead the team forward,” she added.

Two missions

The netball team in particular will be hoping to improve on their sixth place ranking at the 2018 edition but more importantly, they need to maintain their sixth place international ranking to qualify for the World Cup due next year in Cape Town, South Africa – otherwise they would have to do it through qualifiers in August.

For most enthusiasts, anything is possible if the She Cranes could field usual shooters Proscovia and Mary Nuba together.

That would demand that one of them is fielded as a goal attacker. The She Cranes were working hard in camp in Nakirebe before they left for Birmingham but unfortunately their captain could not join them here but she is expectant.

“We tried this (fielding her and Nuba together) at the last World Cup (2019 in Liverpool) and I played as a goal attacker. I am ready to do anything for the team but we also have a good pool of versatile players who can be fielded anywhere,” Proscovia said.

Physical test for runners

Meanwhile, that is not the only concern for Uganda. Long distance legend Joshua Cheptegei revealed to this newspaper in a story run yesterday that he was feeling pain in his right hamstring.

Cheptegei is scheduled to compete in the 5,000m on August 6 in Birmingham but his participation could majorly depend on how fast he overcomes that niggle.

“All our three (Tokyo) Olympics medallists are headed here in Birmingham,” chef de mission Moses Mwase, told Daily Monitor in reference to Cheptegei, Jacob Kiplimo (5,000m and 10,000m) and Peruth Chemutai (women’s 3,000m steeplechase) on Monday night.

But that was before our sources in Oregon revealed that Cheptegei was headed to Entebbe rather than United Kingdom yesterday. The inference here, barring intervention from the powers that be, could be that Cheptegei will not compete in Birmingham.

Cheptegei defended his 10,000m World Championships gold in Oregon on July 17 but added another competitive 25 laps in his system when he did the 5,000m heats on July 21 and finals on Sunday.

Running next Saturday would mean Cheptegei’s body bearing the brunt of doing 62.5 laps in 21 days yet if he does not, Uganda’s chances of performing better than they did in Gold Coast hang in balance. Kiplimo, on the other hand, did only the 10,000m bagging bronze in Oregon and should be well rested. But he too will be clocking 62.5 laps in 21 days if he goes for both the 5,000m and 10,000m races in Birmingham as is scheduled.

Netball
July 30: Uganda vs. New
Zealand, 8.30pm
July 31: Uganda vs. Trinidad
and Tobago, 8.30pm
August 2: England vs.
Uganda,8.30pm
August 3: Uganda vs. N.
Ireland, 2pm
August 5: Classification
match, 11am
Athletics
August 2, 8.30pm
Jacob Kiplimo, 10000m final
August 5, 8.30pm
Peruth Chemutai, 3000m
steeplechase final
August 6, 8.30pm
Joshua Cheptegei, Jacob
Kiplimo, 5000m final

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