MAK arena ready for championship

You are here

Monday, Makerere

World University Netball Championship

After a long spell of suspense, the venue for the third World University Netball Championship is finally ready.

The Makerere University facility that started being constructed in August had raised doubts about its readiness for the weeklong event.

“I can assure you that the facility will be ready,” stated Penninah Kabenge, a local organising committee member and Association of Uganda University Sports president.

LOC vice president Cyriaco Kabagambe last week also assured the public that the facility would be in a usable state.

Government released sh5.57bn for the facility. But this was on condition that construction would be by the UPDF Engineering Brigade.

UPDF is known for not only working under tight deadlines, but also producing quality work. For this project they have had three shifts working day and night. “They (UPDF) have also assured us that it will be usable for the championship,” said Kabagembe.

Meanwhile, preparations for the annual event were jolted last week after Nambia pulled out.

There will consequently be a delegates’ meeting today that could have the fixtures changed.

Kenya, Singapore and USA were the first teams to arrive on Friday. Defending champions South Africa, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka jetted in yesterday.

Shortly after arrival Amara Mbionwu, the USA captain promised a good show.

USA who are newcomers in one of the most popular female sports, have in both the past two editions finished last.

“We have been training since the year started and I believe we are more than ready to battle for the title this time,” Mbionwu stated on arrival at Entebbe.

Team Uganda has been training at the MTN Arena in Lugogo and Ndejje University on the outskirts of Kampala city.

At the last edition South Africa beat Jamaica 43-39 to win gold. Uganda finished fourth after being beaten to bronze by Australia.

Host nations organise the biennial event together with the Fédération Internationale du Sport Universitaire (FISU).

In July, 2012, the first World University Netball Championship was held in Cape Town, South Africa.

The South African Federation of University Sports organised the event. It is a women's indoor tournament with a maximum of 12 teams competing.

A total of 12 competitors and five officials are allowed per team.