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Silverbacks to Camp in Turkey ahead of FIBA World Cup Qualifiers

The silverbacks finished 2nd in group comprising of Nigeria, Mali and Rwanda at the FIBA World Cup qualifiers Africa first round held in Bamako, Mali early this year in February.
Part of the Uganda team during a game
The Silverbacks, Uganda men's basketball team are set to face Cameroon, Bahrain, and Iran in the preparation for basketball World Cup qualifiers in Nigeria.

The Silverbacks finished 2nd in a group comprising of Nigeria, Mali, and Rwanda at the FIBA World Cup qualifiers Africa first round held in Bamako, Mali early this year in February.

Now in preparation for a do or die second round to be held from 29th June to 1st July in Lagos, Nigeria, the team will set off for a two weeks camp in Istanbul, Turkey.

The Silverbacks team is targeting to finish in the top two position in the encounter of the second round in order to get automatic qualification to the FIBA World Cup to take place in China in September 2019.

According to Coach Mandy Juruni Lutwama, five Ugandan Foreign-based players have been brought on board to add to the seven local players. 

New additions to the team include Emmanuel Mugenga and Dengeu Geu John who all play in the top flight leagues abroad. City Oilers Guard  Dean Jordin Mayes, Samuel Kalwanyi, and Robinson Odoch Opong join the list of international players.

Others are captain Stephen Omony, Joseph Ikong, James Okello, Stanley Mugerwa, Jimmy Enabu, Cyrus Kiviri, and a new addition to the national team Ivan Lumanyika.

According to coach Mandy Juruni, the team is set for the contest and is ready to come back with better results. Juruni says the team looks better especially with an addition of two good players.

He says their performance last year was outstanding and this time their target is to upset Nigeria that defeated them in the last minutes of the first round.

Stephen Omony the Silverbacks team captain says, this time it will be a different game looking at the results registered last year. 

He says they have studied and learned their opponents but most importantly worked on the gaps that existed. According to Omony, most of the players on board are on form and are hungry for wins.

The Silverbacks also say that unlike last year where some players arrived for the tournament late, this time the players will all come early and will not have challenges of flight delays.

The team will face Nigeria and Mali on 30th June and Rwanda on 1st July.

In the first round encounter, Uganda lost to Nigeria 86-102, 76-79 to Mali and won Rwanda 79-63.

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