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6 basketball teams Zimbabwe-bound

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SIX local basketball teams have confirmed their participation in the Harare Mayor’s Invitational Basketball Challenge (HMIBC) scheduled for August 18 to 20 in Harare, Zimbabwe.

Malawi will be represented by Central Region Zone Basketball League (Cezobal) reigning champions, Central Knights, Cougars and Bravehearts in the men’s category whereas Lady Dynamites, Cougars and Bravehearts Ladies will feature in the women’s category.

HMIBC Tournament Director, Kuda Zvareva, confirmed that teams from Malawi had registered for participation.

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“We have received an overwhelming response from teams outside Zimbabwe. We expect to have top teams from Southern Africa,” he said.

Zimbabwean basketball giants, Harare City Hornets, will host the tournament that is also expected to attract teams from Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia, South Africa and Tanzania.

Francistown Flames (Botswana), Savio (Tanzania) Foxes and JBC (Zimbabwe) Matero Magic (Zambia) have also confirmed their participation in the tournament.

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Knights Head of Marketing and Fundraising, Emmanuel Phiri, said they were hoping for an improved performance in Zimbabwe after a poor showing in Mbabane, Swaziland, in June.

“We want to show that we are one of the good teams. We struggled in Swaziland but we hope to do better in Zimbabwe this year,” he said.

Knights took part in the Swaziland Invitational Tournament whereas Bravehearts hosted an international tournament in Lilongwe recently.

Last year, Knights also participated in a tournament in Zimbabwe.

Cougars Board Member, Tendai Banda, also confirmed that they would take part in the Harare tournament.

Cougars will make their debut in an international tournament away from home having participated in the Bravehearts International Tournament on home soil early this year in which they defeated Hornets.

Bravehearts Patron, Griffin Kalua, said his charges had paid affiliation fees for the competition.

“We are going to Zimbabwe to compete. We have so much international exposure, so we are not scared of any team and we want other countries to know that there is basketball in Malawi,” Kalua said.

Last year, Bravehearts travelled to Zimbabwe, Tanzania and Zambia.

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