Saturday, July 20, 2024

Uganda: Silverbacks Want to Seal Qualification in Morocco

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The Silverbacks can lose to both Morocco and Cape Verde and still qualify for next month’s Fiba Afrobasket in Kigali, Rwanda.

Having finished the first round of qualifiers with a 2-1 record, George Galanopoulos’s charges have a buffer.

In defeat, they would still have a chance if they lost their remaining games since they would be level on points with both Morocco and Cape Verde.

Points’ difference would then come into play.

That, however, is not something the team has in mind as they take on Morocco today in Rabat. In fact, only one game matters for the Silverbacks. Team captain Jimmy Enabu, having averaged 17.7 points and five assists, is confident the job can be done to cancel out any mathematics.

One shot

“We are only focusing on one game for now, not thinking about the next. Almost like we don’t know that there could be another,” Enabu said in a phone interview.

The guard is not only the team captain, he is also the only player in the current squad to have graced the last two Fiba Afrobasket championships.

He is easily the most consistent locally-based player.


Enabu sees no need to change the brand of basketball for a team whose qualification was delayed from February due to registering Covid-19 cases.

“We have to play our brand of basketball that has given us results so far,” he notes

“The adjustments we’ve made are basic ones that mainly focus on what we have already been doing. So, we are just trying to get better at doing them.”


There are three additions that will wear the black, yellow and red for the first time and they all carry with them attributes that can only improve the team.

Keiran Zziwa is a 6’0 point guard and joins Enabu and Tonny Drileba in bringing down the ball. Abdihakim Ghedi Mohamed is a 6’11 centre and adds more size in the paint for Uganda. Arthur Kaluma, a 6’8 forward was part of the Ugandan side that was kicked out of the bubble in Monastir following reported Covid-19 cases in the team camp in February.

His athleticism, size and length allow him to guard multiple positions on the floor and that gives Uganda the depth needed at this level.