By Kirandha Alisharan
On Saturday 15th January at the old Kampala arena, league table leaders Sport-S will yet again face Nemostars in the final of the delayed Uganda National club championship whose initial stages were played last year in Kabale.
First of all the Venue is just perfect at all scores, it’s an indoor facility, rubber floor, within the City Centre and obviously a neutral ground. So venue wise, the Old Kampala arena is much better compared to the Nsambya cage which is an outdoor setting, home to Sport-S.
I personally have waited enough. So for the venue, tick✓.
Right time for a final? Hmmm… Well maybe not the best time for a game that’s going to decide what kind of energy round two opens with as the national league games are slated to commence next weekend but as I said earlier we’ve waited enough and we have to “get this out of the sitting room” (kive mu diiro).
Both teams have had relatively enough time to prepare for the game and also heal from a really hectic round one of the National League where they both ended it in style winning their last games on the same day 12/12/21 thus Nemostar beat Ndejje while Sport-S beat prisons hence a points tie despite one being ahead of the other.
“It’s the first game of the year and I would not want to comment so much on that game but we are going to offer what we have been doing training”. Nemo-Stars Coach Andrew Okapis noted earlier in an interview with a newspaper.
Sport-S and Nemostars have met on a couple of finals with the most recent being the national league finals of 2019 where the former lost.
Time and again, there has been a change in squads introducing fresh blood to such competitive games the likes of Marino Oboke of Sport-S, Jonathan Tumukunde from UCU and Moses Odeke etc but not ignoring the usual “suspects” on such occasions am talking of man like George Aporu recently named best volleyball player for the month of December 2021 by Fortebet (whatever the criteria was they know best), National team setter Smith Okumu, middle blocker Bernard Malinga and Sport-S captain Dickens Otim among others.
I mean these guys have stood the test of time and they have been here, giving volleyball a face all through and we are glad they will make this a familiar encounter and prove why this is a big boys clash.
For this game, the winner will get to represent Uganda at the Africa Club Championships an event that brings together volleyball clubs from different parts of the continent where Nemostars have represented Uganda consecutively for the last two years at this level.
Head to head, Nemostars look good on paper they have beaten Sport-S from every chance they’ve laid hands on be it finals or league games however much they have been hard earned wins but hey they are still wins and in the end, winners are winners regardless of how they win.
Sport-S will put up a spirited fight as table leaders would do but with Smith balling for George, Fahad and Bernard, boy oh boy Nemostars still has an upper hand to take it away.
I really hope these chaps give us enough fire to set the pace through the whole of round two because believe it or not, this game is going to be a yardstick to determine how mentally and physically each team will present themselves.
About Kirandha Alisharan