• “It is a marathon kind of situation and I think we should be tough mentally and stronger physically for us to achieve our goals," said Ojukwu.
• John Wiljass and Lennox Wanje pepped KPA with 13 and 12 points respectively. KU had 12 from Simon Wambua and 11 from Dolph Benedict.
Kenya Ports Authority head coach Anthony Ojukwu called on his players to be tough mentally and physically ahead of the Kenya National Basketball League playoff semifinals.
The veteran tactician said that the postseason games are becoming tougher as all teams are ready for the challenges thrown at them.
Speaking after the men’s side beat Kenyatta University Pirates 54-36 in a quarterfinal at their Makande Welfare Hall backyard in Mombasa.
“I believe the players are giving their best and are ready to retain the title,” he said. “It is a marathon kind of situation and I think we should be tough mentally and stronger physically for us to achieve our goals.”
Ojukwu, however, lamented how his team started the encounter ‘with no focus and concentration at all’ despite a 23-22 edge at the break
“Our opponents did well to capitalise on our mistakes and we nearly paid for it. We had to change tack on our defence putting more pressure on their star players,” he said.
The move forced the students to do things in a hurry, getting out of their game plan as KPA broke away in the last two quarters to secure the win.
Ojukwu said even though they are the favourites, they need not be overconfident
He said as the favourites, they should neither be overconfident nor should they underrate their opponents.
KU coach Caleb Osewe said: “We tried our best. I am happy with the boys’ efforts in reaching this far.”
John Wiljass and Lennox Wanje pepped KPA with 13 and 12 points respectively. KU had 12 from Simon Wambua and 11 from Dolph Benedict.
KPA ladies also made it to the semifinals after their opponents Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology failed to show up.
KPA men will now take on Thunder, who shut out Strathmore University Blades 2-0.
The women’s side will meet the winners of the clash between Strathmore University Swords and Storms. The students have a 1-0 series lead.