Ubumwe’s Bahigye wants more trophies

Ubumwe’s Bahigye wants more trophies

Ubumwe basketball club won the league and playoffs titles in second season since their establishment

 After lifting their first league and playoffs trophies, Ubumwe women basketball club are now looking to dominating the local scene in the coming seasons.

Only two years since making their league debut, Ubumwe have now dethroned APR, who had dominated the women’s league since 2007. Ubumwe beat Rwandans Allied for Peace Progress (RAAP) in three games to win the playoffs title over the weekend.

Ubumwe head coach Jacques Bahigye told the media on Sunda, said: “We are very happy to win this trophy after only two years since the team was formed.”

“I feel very grateful to my players and management for making sure we achieve our targets faster than we anticipated. Nonetheless, we need to focus on building a strong team, which is capable of winning more trophies at home and beyond,” he said.

Ubumwe ran away with the best of five playoffs series finals after winning 64-37 in Game 1, Game 2, 64-58 and 63-39 in Game 3 at Amahoro indoor stadium court.

Ghana-born Priscilla Doudou, a US citizen, was Ubumwe’s key players scoring a combined 55 scores in three games, which also earned her call-up to Rwanda women’s national team.

August 22, 2014 By : Category : English featured inthespotlight Teams 0 Comment

Buzangu brothers end Espoir’s unbeaten run

m_Buzangu brothers end Espoir’s unbeaten r

Bienvenu Ngandu of Espoir, right, goes up for a defence rebound against CSK in game 1

Twin brothers Mike and Patrick Buzangu played a pivotal role as CercleSportiff de Kigali (CSK) ended Espoir’s unbeaten run this season with a 73-64 in Game 3 of the men’s basketball playoffs finals on Sunday at Amahoro indoor stadium court.

 Defending champions Espoir BC had won Games 1 and 2 and were just one win away from retaining the title for the third year running but their opponents had other ideas.

Mike Buzangu of CSK BC scored the game high 25 points with his elder brother Patrick Buzangu adding 23 points in a game which CSK needed to win. Espoir players struggled to get points on board with Olivier Shyaka Olivier, their highest scorer, managing just 12 points and EliaKaze scoring 11.

Patrick Buzangu said: “It was a very tough game for us but we were determined to stop Espoir from winning the trophy today. We corrected the mistakes we had done before and followed the coach’s advice.”

Both clubs will meet again in Game 4 which has now been shifted to September 6-7 after Espoir have returned from taking part in a Zone 5 tournament to be held in Mombasa, Kenya.

Meanwhile, in the women’s category, Ubumwe added the playoffs title to their recent league crown by winning Game 3 of their contest against RAPP 63-39. They had also won Games 1 and 2 on Friday and Saturday, respectively.

Priscilla Doudou of Ubumwe scored a game high 12 points while Clementine Mugwaneza scored eight points.

August 19, 2014 By : Category : English featured inthespotlight Players 0 Comment

United Generation Basketball team hope to continue miraculous run

United Generation Basketball

United Generation Basketball team (UGB),hope to continue their surprising run in this year’s basketball championships by dethroning defending champions Espoir in this weekend’s semi- final clash.

UGB won’t be a stroll in the park according to their big talking coach Yves Murenzi who also knows they have a big task ahead.

“We are well prepared for the playoffs battle, we have been in training for the last three weeks and I’m confident we can eliminate Espoir although it’s going to be very tough.”

The Kigali based team will hope to hand Espoir only their second defeat in three seasons in game one of the best of three series starting this Saturday at the StadeAmahoro indoor stadium.

Army side APR will take on CercleSportiff de Kigali in what is building out to be an exciting encounter as both teams will seek to get the upper hand in first leg of their series.

In the women’s category seven times defending champions APR are set to face Rwanda Allied for Progress (RAPP) as they seek to dethrone last year’s champions Ubumwe who will be in action on Sunday.



August 10, 2014 By : Category : English featured inthespotlight Tournament 0 Comment

Basketball Play-offs scheduled for August 8-17

m_Basketball Play-offs scheduled for August 8-17

 This year’s basketball league play-offs are scheduled to run from August 8 to 17, according to the national basketball association technical director Didier Shema Maboko.

 The play-offs are contested by the top four teams in the regular season in both men and women championships.

 The men’s play-offs will have reigning champions Espoir, Cercle Sportif de Kigali (CSK), APR, who will be joined by either United Generation Basketball club (UGB) and Rusizi.

 Rusiz face Espoir in league final match on Sunday in a game the former needs to win to qualify for the playoffs, defeat will see UGB progress.

 The game was initially supposed to be played place last Sunday but Rusizi requested for it to be moved due to financial reasons.

 In women’s competition will have champions Ubumwe BBC, 2013 winners APR, Rwanda Allied Peace for Progress (RAPP) and University of Rwanda- Huye campus.

August 5, 2014 By : Category : English featured Score & Schedule 0 Comment

Men & Women basketball teams picked for Afro-basket

Men & Women basketball teams picked for Afro-basket

THE RWANDA BASKETBALL Federation under the tutelage of men and women team head coaches has picked the national teams to start preparations for Afro-basketball and All African Games qualifiers.

The men’s team head coach MoiseMutokambali named a 24-man team to start preparations. Sixteen local players starts camp on Wednesday while eight professional players will join the team in camp next month.

The women basketball coach Jacques Bahige has named a provisional squad of 26 players to start camp. She summoned 20 local based players and six professionals who will join camp in august.

The men’s team is made up of Aboubacar Ally Barame, Alphonse Habyarimana,  PacifiqueHabyarimana, Steven Hagumintwari, Lionel Hakizimana, Parfait Ishimwe, ElieKaje, Pascal KarekeziRurangirwa, Ali KubwimanaKazingufu, Aristide Mugabe,  Muhizi Olivier, Sunny N. Munyandamutsa, Jean Paul Ndoli, BienvenuNgandu, and Olivier Shyaka.

Professional players summoned include; Kami Kabange (City Oilers), Dan Manzi (USA), Adonis Rwabigwi (USA), Nestor Manzi (USA), Patrice Twagirayezu (USA), Bradley Cameroon (USA), Kenneth Gasana (Morocco), Thierry SukuSuku (ACEB France  and Hamza Ruhezamihigo (Canada).

The women squad is comprised of Chantal Akamuntu, JovitheKabarere, JoselyneMunyaneza, Charlotte Umugwaneza, Vanessa Umwizerwa, Denise Uwase, Cecile Nzaramba, Yvette Uwizeye, Christine Uwibambe, Gisele Umutoni, RosineMicomyiza, Jeanne Yamfashije, Priscilla Dodoo, Claudette Imanishimwe, Clementine Ushizimpumu, Clementine Matungano, Esperance Mukaneza, Alice Muhongerwa, Claudette Mugwaneza, Martine Umuhoza and Nicole Rwibutso.

The professional women players include; Henderson Tierra Monay (Angola), AngeKamanyana (USA), Sabine Mugeni (France), Yvonne Kirezi K. (Drc), LaetitiaMahoro (USA) and Nancy Ishimwe (USA).

July 24, 2014 By : Category : English featured inthespotlight Tournament 0 Comment

Ubumwe BBC are one-match away from winning women league title

Ubumwe BBC are one-match away from winning women league title


Rusizi 91-68 Gisenyi


APR 61-69 Ubumwe

UBUMWE BBC will be crowned champions on July 20 if they win their final match against Rwanda Allied Peace for Progress (RAPP).

Ubumwe boosted their chances of winning the league for the first time after edging out seven-time defending champions APR over the weekend.

APR who are league title winners since 2007, lost 61-69 to Ubumwe basketball club which was established two years ago.

Ubumwe now needs to win their last fixture of the season against Rwanda Allied Peace for Progress (RAPP) on July 20 to be crowned new champions.

Reigning champions now lead the standings with 15 points in eight matches, two points better than Ubumwe who have only played seven matches while RAPP are placed third with 11 points secured from seven matches.

In men’s league, Rusizi BBC bounced back from Saturday’s 68-83 defeat to APR to thrash Gisenyi 91-68 on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the battle for the Play-offs position is still on. Rusizi and United Generation Basketball club (UGB) are battling for the only slot to complete the format for the Play-offs round.

Champions Espoir, Cercle Sportif de Kigali (CSK) and APR booked the other slots.

Espoir leads the standings with 38 points, four ahead of second-placed APR while CSK are in third place with 33 points who have a game in hand. UGB is fourth with 31 points while Rusizi are fifth with 29 points and have two games in hand.

If Rusizi beats UGB on July 20 and Espoir on 26, they will snatch an automatic ticket to the play-offs round. However, should they lose to archrivals UGB then the latter will qualify to the Play-Offs set for August.

July 15, 2014 By : Category : English featured Tournament 0 Comment

Espoir eye title victory this weekend

 Espoir eye title victory this weekend

Basketball League


KBC vs CSK 6p.m


UR- Huye vs IPRC 12p.m


Gisenyi vs Espoir 9a.m

Rusizi vs IPRC 10a.m

KCB vs APR 11a.m

REIGNING CHAMPIONS Espoir are set to retain the league title this weekend if they secure a win over Gisenyi club on Sunday.

Espoir who sit at the summit of the league standings with 34 points from 17 matches needs a win over Gisenyi to be granted of title, their third in row since 2012.

Defending champions Espoir are not only interested in retaining the title but winning it in style with an unbeaten record according to Coach Jean Bahufite.

“We want to maintain a perfect finish. Even losing a single league game would be a back slide, we won the title unbeaten in the last two seasons and we intend to repeat the same feat this time,” added Bahufite.

Though the Nyamirambo-based club has two matches in hand against Cercle Sportif de Kigali (CSK) and Rusizi BBC, a win won’t affect their party celebrations on Sunday.

However, before that Kigali basketball club (KBC) hosts CSK today before facing APR in the second game on Sunday.

On Saturday, IPRC-Kicukiro will take on University of Rwanda- Huye Campus (former NUR) and Rusizi on Sunday respectively.

CSK are second on the log with 31 points in 17 matches while APR is placed third on 28 points secured in 18 matches.

June 27, 2014 By : Category : English featured inthespotlight Tournament 0 Comment

Profile of Rwanda’s top basketball referee Shema-Maboko

Rwanda’s international referee Didier Shema-Maboko

Rwanda’s international referee Didier Shema-Maboko

Didier Shema-Maboko is a Rwandan international basketball referee who has dedicated his career to the sport.

He started playing basketball while in senior one at Saint Andre in 1992 and since then he never parted ways with the game. He started featuring for school’s O’level team as well as for A’level team at Ecole Zairwase.

Unfortunately he never won any notable title with any of his schools’ teams, “I never won anything with my schools’ teams. I picked interest in basketball since my first touch on the ball and I never backed-off ever since”

The dark-skinned Maboko also featured for former national basketball league side Kicukiro BBC in the 1997/1998 season.

Shema also used to play football but it was never his first choice or comparable to the passion he had for basketball.

Shema started his officiating career as a table official in national league and lower levels court referee like in inter-schools’ championship. As he continues to improve and impress his seniors, he caught attention and support from the then senior referees in the country.

Some of the important senior referees he found on the scene when he was coming up are: Innocent Rwabuhihi, Eugen Ntashongerwa and Straton Ahimana.

On May 20, 1999, Shema officiated his first league match (women league) as a central referee and since then he raised that match to be professional international referee he’s today.

“My first match as a central official was on May 20, 1999.  The match was between Lycee de Kigali and Mirroir BBC staged at Impala café”he clearly recalls.

From 1999 to 2004, Shema was a local referee and only used to officiate locally-organized competitions until he made his debut on the international scene early.

His first international competition was the inter-East African cities championship staged in Kigali in February 2004.

His second and first competition out of the country he refereed in was the ANOCA U20 championships held in Nairobi, Kenya in December 2006.

In September 2007, he officiated in the Fiba/Africa Zone V club championships held in Kigali, Rwanda.

In 2008, Shema earned an international refereeing license offered by international basketball federation (Fiba) and officiated in four international competitions namely:  CAN U18-Zone V championship in Kampala in August, Fiba/Africa Zone V club championship staged in Addis-Abbaba, Ethiopia in October.

Others were: the 14th Africa women club championships held in Nairobi, Kenya and 23rd Africa Men’s club championships staged in Sousse, Tunisia in December.

In July 2009, the elite referee Shema of Rwanda was one of the few African officials that were selected to officiate at the Fiba/Europe U18 Eurobasket championships held in Metz, France and that is the only tournament he has officiated in out of Africa till today.

“2009 is a year that made up happy in career so far, officiating in tournament like Eurobasket U18 is chance that doesn’t reach anyone.

I’m looking to officiating in more and bigger competitions if God wills” he says.

In the same year, he refereed in Africa men’s basketball championship (Afrobasket) held in Benghazi and Tripoli, Libya in August and women’s Afrobasket staged in Antananarivo, Madagascar in October.

In December, he officiated at the 24th Africa club championship held in Rwanda. In 2010, he officiated at the Indian Ocean region’s champion’s league held in Antananarivo, Madascar.

In 2011, he officiated in four international competitions namely Afrobasket and all Africa games qualifiers held in Rwanda, Afrobasket 2011 in Madagascar, All Africa games in Maputo, Mozambique and Fiba/Africa Zone V club championship in Dar-es-Salaam , Tanzania.

In 2012, he officiated in three competitions namely Afrobasket U18 in Mozambique, Zone IV Afrobasket qualifiers in Bangui, and Central Africa Republic and Africa club championships in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea.

In 2013, he appeared in four international competitions namely Zone V club championship in Burundi, Afrobasket in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, Club championship in Port-Louis, Maurice Island and Fiba/Africa Zone VI club championship in Lusaka, Zimbabwe. Recently, he officiated at the Zone V U18 championships in Kampala, Uganda.

Since 2004, Shema has officiated in over twenty five international competitions.

His ambitions include officiating at the World championships and Olympic Games.

When he retires, he wants to become a Fiba instructor, “becoming an instructor of Fiba is what I want to be after refereeing career. I never want to go away from basketball, I like and enjoy it”

Some of his memorable games he officiated in are: 2011 All Africa games semi-final between Mozambique and Algeria, 2011 Afrobasket quarter-final between Angola and Cameroun, Fiba/Europe U18 match between Germany and Russia among others.

Rwanda’s international Shema apart from officiating, he is the technical director of Rwanda basketball federation (Ferwaba) since September 2012 and he was a member of the executive committee of the federation a year in 2011-2012.

Who is Shema-Maboko?

Born to Augustin Ndarusanzwe (RIP) and Genevieve Musabyemariya on March 15, 1980 in Nyarugenge district, City of Kigali, Shema is the second born from a family of four children (three boys and one girl).

The 34-year old Maboko is married to Hermine E’Geirma with whom they have two daughters (one is 15 year-old and another one is 4-month-old).

He attended camp Kigali primary school before going to Nyamirambo-based Saint Andre for O’level and Ecole Zairwase for A’level pursuing primary teaching that he finished in 1999.

He furthered his studies and Kigali institute of education (K.I.E) from where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Physical and Sport Education in 2007.

Much as he’s a basketball lover and game’s referee, Shema has no particular team or club he supports but has got a taste of a player he likes. Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant is the man he supports and takes Michael Jordan the legend of the game.

June 24, 2014 By : Category : English featured inthespotlight 0 Comment

Espoir edge closer to b-ball league title

Espoir edge closer to bball league title

Reigning champions are inches closer to retaining the national basketball league regular season title for the third time in a row after beating UGB and KBC over the weekend.

Unbeaten in close to three seasons, Espoir won 83-48 over last year’s first runner-up Kigali Basketball Club on Saturday, before overcoming United Generation Basketball club 78-65 on Sunday.

Both games were played at Amahoro indoor stadium in Remera, Kigali.

Espoir stars Lionnel Hakizimana, Bienvenue Ngandu, Olivier Shayka and captain Arstide Mugabe played key roles in both wins.

The two victories put the defending champions in pole position to retain the title following CSK’s failure to beat Rusizi and APR’s defeat to UGB.

“I’m really grateful to my players, they give up,” Espoir’s coach Jean Bahufite told Times Sport after Sunday’s game against UGB.

As it stands, Espoir lead the pack with 32 points from 16 matches, CSK with 29 points come in second position, while APR are third with28 points.


Espoir 78-65 UGB

Rusizi 71-47 CSK

KBC 74-52 UR-CoE


Rusizi 81-37 30-Plus

KBC 48-83 Espoir

UR-CoE 46-71 Gisenyi

APR 58-62 UGB

June 24, 2014 By : Category : English featured inthespotlight 0 Comment

Spurs coach Popovich savours fifth NBA title

The San Antonio Spurs.

The San Antonio Spurs.

Gregg Popovich thought he had seen it all in his 17 seasons as a coach in the National Basketball Association.

 That is until his San Antonio Spurs exploded in the opening half of game three of the NBA finals, shooting a finals record 76 per cent.

 “I don’t think we’ll shoot 76 per cent in a half ever again. That’s crazy,” Popovich said.

 For a coach who often rebuffs interviewers with surly one-word answers, Popovich’s impromptu answer was refreshingly out of character.

 But make no mistake, behind that gruff exterior is a coach who knows how to motivate and cares immensely about his players. The 65-year-old Popovich is a great decision maker who led the Spurs to the fifth title in franchise history Sunday as San Antonio wrapped up a five-game victory over the Miami Heat.

 The Spurs stomped the two-time defending NBA champion Heat in the 2014 finals, shooting a finals record 52.7 percent from the field overall.

 They put together two straight blowout wins in games three and four on the road before returning home to clinch the series with another lopsided 104-87 win.

 This season Popovich has been able to mould the raw talent of Kawhi Leonard into the MVP of the finals. He also took Charlotte Bobcats castoff Boris Diaw and fit him perfectly into the Spurs’ system.


 “As time evolves and you get older in the business you figure out what’s really important, and you don’t waste time trying to make people what they’re not going to be,” Popovich said.

 “You’ve just got to figure out who people are and what they can give you and take advantage of their positives.

 “You learn that you can’t make everything the way you think you might. You can’t make somebody great, so you don’t waste your time. You make a trade. You get rid of somebody.

 “You make sure you’re bringing people in who fit in all the areas you want. Competitiveness and team play.”

 Popovich likes to tell the story of when Manu Ginobili first arrived in San Antonio.

 “I’ve learned to shut up more, and that probably is due to Manu Ginobili,” he said. “When he first came I was going to make him a heck of a player.

 “And after 20 minutes I realized that he didn’t need me to do that. He was already a heck of a player.

 “Sometimes being quiet and letting the player play is much more important than trying to be Mr. Coach and teach him this or teach him that.

 “I didn’t make him a competitor and there is no way I could make him a non-competitor.”

 Popovich believes communication is the key to any good relationship between coach and player.

 “You take somebody like Danny Green, who we’ve worked with for a long time and actually cut him twice,” Popovich said. “When you see somebody develop and come into his own, you feel like you did something worthwhile.

 “So it’s one of the sources of satisfaction in the business, if you can see a young player grow and become confident.”

 This year Popovich led the Spurs to a NBA best 62-20 record, extending their streak of winning at least 50 games to a record 15-straight seasons.

 Popovich had guided the Spurs to six NBA finals appearances.


Popovich was named the NBA’s coach of the year in April. It is the third time he has earned the award, joining Pat Riley and Don Nelson as the only coaches to receive the Red Auerbach Trophy three times. He also won the award in the 2002-03 and 2011-12 seasons.

 Popovich is the longest tenured active coach in the NBA, but in 1999 there were calls for his ouster after the Spurs got off to a rocky start to the lockout-shortened season.

 San Antonio had lost five of seven including back-to-back double digit losses to Utah and Seattle.

 The Spurs eventually turned it around, going on a 15-2 run in the playoffs. They topped it off by beating the New York Knicks in five games for their first NBA title.

 Popovich says NBA owners are often too quick to pull the trigger on coaches when teams get off to poor starts or don’t live up high expectations.

 “Guys get fired every year who are good coaches and it has got nothing to do with what they know or don’t know,” Popovich said.


June 19, 2014 By : Category : English NBA Tournament 0 Comment