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South Sudan thrash Somalia in Afro-basketball opener

PHILIP ONYANGOBy PHILIP ONYANGO
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South Sudan walloped Somalia 114-79 in the opening match of the Fiba Afro Basketball Pre-qualifiers, which tipped off at the Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium on Tuesday.

The towering South Sudanese were dominant in all departments controlling the boards in both ends. They penetrated their opponents defence at will, nailing treys from beyond the arc, while at the same time keeping the fans on the edge of their seats with rim roasting dunks. 

After leading 25-17 in the first quarter, the tactful Sudanese engaged a higher gear taking a comfortable 63-39 at the break with skipper Wek Wek, Tent Pal, Mauith Mathiang and Deng Mayoit the main actors. 

South Sudan's Wek Nyang (right) dribbles past South Sudan’s Wek Nyang (right) dribbles past Somalia’s Haji Mohammed during their Fiba Afro Basketball Pre-qualifiers match at the Nyayo National Stadium Gymnasium on January 14, 2020. PHOTO | CHRIS OMOLLO |

Somalia, who had some flashes of brilliance from among others Shek Mohammed and Mohammed Wahid, tried to play catch up but could not just catch up with the polished Sudanese who controlled proceedings.

“We want to take it one game at a time. We are taking every team seriously at this championship as we target the sole ticket for the next phase of the qualifiers,” said Wek.

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South Sudan play Eritrea in their second match on Wednesday at 2pm, while Somalia take on Burundi at 4pm.