UCU Doves vs Nemo Stars – 8pm Lugogo
It has been a fairytale season for the UCU Doves thus far but all that will count for nothing if they do not win the national league title.
After dominating the regular season in which they only lost two games, the university side face defending champions Nemostars in search of their first ever league title.
The semifinal match up with Ndejje University turned out to be a walk in the park for Nason Bwesigye’s charges but he expects tougher opposition in the final.
Nemostars ended UCU’s hopes of a first league final last year winning the best of 3 semifinal series 2-1 as they went on to lift the title.
“We have learnt our lessons and are ready to overcome our weaknesses,” Bwesigye told this website ahead of Wednesday’s game one.
UCU has played all but one final in the open championships this season and managed to clinch the Nkumba and UCU open.
They also lifted the national clubs championship when they defeated Sport-S in Nkumba to qualify for next year’s Africa Clubs Championship.
“There’s no room for complacency and the team knows that,” Bwesigye warned.
UCU defeated Nemostars on both occasions in the regular season but will require the experience to edge them in the business end of the season.
For Nemostars, the struggles always seem to end with the regular season. They are a different animal in the playoffs and UCU know that too well.
Tom Amou returned to full action in the first game of the semis having been in and out of the team due to work commitments,
His presence completes the Nemostars team and means main attacker and team captain George Aporu does not have to take every ball and wear out.
Head coach Andrew Okapis has what his opponents lack and cannot buy, experience.
“We have worked hard as a team and we are prepared for the stage,” Okapis revealed ahead of the finals.
Aporu, Amou and Fahad Zungu tore through the Sport-S block to guide the side to the finals and they will need to be in the same kind of form when action starts.
The advantage for most university teams in Uganda is the bond amongst players who spend most of their time together.
That bond is even stronger in the UCU Doves, a team with three sets of brothers.
Team captain John Mary Okurut and his brother Elias Isiagi are the leaders of the side.
Jonathan Tumukunde is the team’s best attacker while his brother Johnson Rukundo has no complaints often coming off the bench to change games.
Isaac Omongin and Vincent Odeke is the other set and their prowess through the center is something Nemostars have to watch out for.