—Zenith B/ball Tourney:
The coach of Plateau Rocks, a female basketball team, Alex Guwan, has blamed his team’s two consecutive losses in the on-going Zenith Bank Female Basketball Tournament in Abuja inclement weather.
The coach told sportswriters in Jos that his players would have done better if not for the intense heat in the capital city.
He said that the team arrived in Abuja in a good form and started on a sound note by hitting Customs of Lagos 35 – 32 points in their first match.
“You know Jos weather is not as hot as that of Abuja, and that has weakened our girls. Beside the weather, we have some injury concerns that we are currently battling with.
“We lost to FCT Abuja by 45 – 60 points on Sunday evening and we again lost to Dolphins of Lagos 48 – 79 on Monday morning,’’ he said.
The coach, however, said that the heat and injuries notwithstanding, Plateau Rocks bounced back and claimed some vital victories.
“We overcame the defeats and we won Ahit of Kano 32-18 on Wednesday and Coal City of Enugu 41 – 20 on Thursday.
“The first phase of the tournament is expected to end on Saturday and we still have a couple of matches to play.
“We are hoping to boost our chances of playing in the second phase in Ilorin in May and subsequently qualify for the last eight in Lagos,’’ he enthused.
He said that the stakes were very high for the team to qualify for the last eight as they did last year.
“For the first time, we qualified for the last eight and came sixth in the finals. We will shrug off the setback as we hope to surpass last year’s feat,’’ he said.
Guwan commended Zenith Bank for the wonderful organisation of the event.