Uganda National Basketball team, Silverbacks will this afternoon kick start their second window of the 2022 FIBA World Cup qualifiers with a tough fixture against Mali. The qualifiers will take place in Kigali, Rwanda.
The Silverbacks will be more than hungry to revenge against the West African side that beat them 76-66 in the qualifiers of the first window played last year.
The team under the stewardship of coach George Galanopoulos will however miss the services of Adam Seiko who pulled due to travel challenges.
But, they will build from Phoenix Suns’ star player Ishmail Wainright who is making a return to the team after missing out on the first window of the qualifiers because of his busy schedule.
The team already played friendly matches during the camp in Egypt and also played against South Sudan in Kigali winning 65-62.
“So far the preparations are going on well and we are ready for the matches," said Silverbacks player James Okello.
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“We had a friendly against South Sudan and we won the game with three points. But the most important thing is that we improved," added the head coach.
Unlike the last international engagements where the team’s preparations had some setbacks courtesy of funding issues, the team has had enough time to prepare better.
Their target, now is to secure as more wins as possible in their bid to progress to next round of the World Cup qualifiers.
Uganda is currently third in Group A after securing only one victory in the first window of the qualifier. Uganda only managed to beat Cape Verde and lost to Mali and Nigeria. The Silverbacks will have at least to maintain the third place after the games in Kigali to progress to the next round.
The top three teams in all the four groups after the second window will be pooled into two groups of six teams and top two teams, and the best third-placed team will qualify for the 2023 World Cup.
Second Window Fixture
July 1: Uganda Vs MaliJuly 2: Cape Verde Vs UgandaJuly 3: Nigeria Vs Uganda