Huge response for Mayor's b/ball tourney

HARARE - There has been overwhelming response from teams intending to participate in the inaugural Mayor’s International Basketball tournament with only two slots remaining.

The tournament to be held between August 18 to 20 in the capital, is the brainchild of Harare Mayor Bernard Manyenyeni.

In the women’s category at least 14 teams have confirmed their participation with only two slots remaining while in the men’s section; all the 20 available slots have been taken up.

Reigning national basketball champions and hosts, Harare City Hornets men’s team, still fresh from a successful outing in Swaziland, will be hoping to make their regional success count at home.

City Hornets secured a silver medal at the Swaziland International Invitational Basketball tournament last month after losing 65-53 to Jozi Nuggets in the final.

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Manyenyeni said the purpose of hosting the tournament was to showcase the beauty of the capital to all the visiting foreign teams.

“My job is to be involved with every aspect of the city including the various softer activities that are so often overshadowed by the pressing operational issues,” he said during the launch of the tournament recently.

“Sport arts and culture are among such…no Harare team has initiated a tournament of this nature, creating a platform for South Africans, Zambians, Mozambicans, Tanzanians, Malawians, Swazis and many others to visit the city that they have, so far, only heard about.”

At least 32 primary schools under the jurisdiction of the capital city will also take part in the competition.

“The extension of the main challenge to the junior tournament through the 32 council schools is most commendable,” Manyenyeni said.

“It gives these youngsters an opportunity to interact and play at a level that they may never have done without such an event.”

Women teams confirmed: Harare City Hornets, Brave Hearts (Malawi), Vixens, JBC , Lakers, Cougars (Malawi), Lady Dynamites (Malawi), Lynx Ball Queens, Matero Magic (Zambia), Southern Mavericks, The Weekend Squad (Namibia), Midlands State University, University of Zimbabwe, Dolphins (Botswana).

Men teams confirmed: Harare City Hornets, Francistown Flames (Botswana), Central Knights (Malawi), Brave Hearts (Malawi), Foxes, JBC, Savio (Tanzania), Cougars (Malawi), Dolphins (Botswana), Matero Magic (Zambia), Hustlers, Glen View Rockets, Southern Mavericks, Looters (Zambia), Troopers (Botswana), Mercenaries, Giants, Midlands State University, University of Zimbabwe, Varsity Leopards.

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