Uganda men’s basketball team, the Silverbacks have finally travelled to Angola for the 2023 FIBA World Cup qualifiers. The team set off for Angola, Luanda yesterday and arrived today.
Early this week, there was backlash on social media after the Silverbacks announced that they have been forced to drop out of the first window of the 2023 FIBA World Cup qualifiers due to lack of funds.
The games were to take place from November 26th to 28th, 2021.
The Federation of Uganda Basketball Association ( FUBA) President, Nasser Sserunjogi on Tuesday issued a statement through the National Council of Sports that they had insufficient funds to support the team for this particular game.
“The Federation of Uganda Basketball Association ( FUBA) on a very sad note wishes to inform you that the senior men’s national Basketball team ( the Silverbacks) will not compete at the FIBA world cup qualifiers window 1 in Benguela (Angola) from 26th to 28th of November, 2021,” reads part of the statement from FUBA.
“FUBA was informed by government of Uganda through National Council of Sports ( NCS) that there was no more money to support the team for this particular campaign. The team needed approximately Shs380 m to make the trip.” The statement reads further.
The silverbacks had already embarked on preparations for the qualifiers with the home-based camp at the African Bible Study in Lubowa for a residential training camp since Friday 12th November 2021.
On Tuesday however, the FUBA President, Sserunjogi is reported to have held a meeting with State Minister for Sports, Hanson Obua to ask for assistance.
Obua told the media on Wednesday that the Silverbacks are to blame for their setback because they handed in their request for finances a bit late.
The basketball team was finally granted the needed finances by the government and travelled immediately.
According to Arnold Katabi, the FUBA Vice President, the latest report is that the semi-final games have been pushed to 4th and 5th December which will help the team have more time to plan well for the games.
The 2023 FIBA World Cup will be held in Indonesia, Japan, and Philippines.