First Bank agog, as stars, officials arrive
Dolphins target semifinals despite Angolans’ antics
SHOUTS of joy erupted yesterday at the Hotel Mana Lu camp of First Bank Basketball Club of Lagos when the team’s last batch of players and officials arrived to join their mates in the quest to reclaim the African Club Championship trophy they last won in 2009.
The batch arrived late in Angola due to visa hitches that prevented them from travelling to the competition venue last Thursday.
Among the new arrivals, who were not in the team that defeated INNS of Congo in First Bank’s opening game of the competition on Saturday, are Joyce Ekweremadu, Chidinmma Nwakamma, Ramata Dao and Julliet Chinyere.
The officials are assistant coach, Taiye Adeniyi and team Liaison officer, Ade Olufojude.
First Bank’s Sports consultant, Segun Odegbami, Team Manager, Ngozi Iwuanyanwu and the last player, Nkem Akaraiwe, are still being expected to join the team.
Ekweremandu, who was in the team that placed fourth last year in Tunisia, said, “I am happy to be here in Luanda to help my team. Hopefully we can win the title if we put in a lot of hardwork. It is going to be easy, but with team work we can get to the top.”
She added: “I must also commend my team mates for the good job they did against INNS. It is not easy playing with seven men, but it was important that they got the job done and we will take it up from there.”
Meanwhile, President of Dolphins’ Basketball Club, Wale Aboderin, is hopeful that his team will get to the semi finals despite the presence of strong teams in the competition.
Aboderin said the fact that most of the top teams have recruited top players from across the world also give them the edge, but assured that his team would put up strong performances to be counted among the best.
He also said his team’s opening game victory would spur his girls to greater height.
“Before seeing every opponent, we hope to be in the semifinals, but having the players some of our rivals have brought in, we are beginning to see that we must do our outmost best to play in the semi finals.