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Badilisha Lugha KISWAHILI

Thabeet shows the way in basketball promotion

6th June 2012
Tanzania`s basketball export Hasheem Thabeet gives instructions to basketball teens during a two-day clinic staged at the Don Bosco venue in Dar es Salaam over the weekend.

Just two days of basketball clinic staged in Dar es Salaam under tutelage of Tanzania’s only NBA player HAsheem Thabeet could be instrumental in the entire efforts to promote the game in the country.

The towering player who attained milestone achievement after cruising into the world’s high-profile basketball league in America looks not greedy to share his success to his fellow Tanzanians.

The clincin staged at the Don Bosco venue in Dar es Salaam, one of Thabeet’s ancestral routes that inspired him to a booming career success was jammed by basketball’s up-and-coming players of the new generation.

They came all the way from Dar es Salam as well as upcountry just to learn new tactics from a young man who stands as a basketball icon for the country.

It was Tahbeet’s second clinic of its kind that would linger-long in memories of most of the basketball teens who are on track to the game’s stardom.

Unlike other athletes who would have been arrogant, Thabeet is completely different as he took trouble to teach and impart what he has in the game to the up-and-coming players.

The Tanzania’s basketball icon volunteered to conduct the clinic and he did not disappoint at all. He was friendly and stepped into the shoes of the youngsters as he guided them onhow best to develop basketball career.

It was just two days but the impact and repercussion of the clinic is likely to be long lasting and not surprisingly might yield good results in the long run.

The NBA player is in the country for vacation but still showed no signs of regretting to spend part of his precious time to share basketball knowledge and skills to young players of the nation.

Coca-Cola Tanzania and the Tanzania Basketball Federation played their role to team up with Thabeet to organise the successful clinic.

The government has showered praise on Thabeet for his concerted efforts that has earned him a ticket to play in the highly competitive basketball league in the world- NBA league in the US for the past three years.

Deputy Minister for Education and Vocation Training Philip Mulugo acknowledged Thabeet’s outstanding achievement when launching the two-day youth basketball clinic over the weekend.

The Sprite sponsored clinic attracted over 200 Under-17 students from Mwanza, Arusha, Kilimanjaro, Tanga, Zanzibar and Dar es Salaam.

Mulugo urged education institutions to take sports programs seriously in a bid to produce best athletes that can compete and win medals for the countries at international stage.

“Let me use this opportunity to send a message to teachers and students some of whom take school sports programs as a time for leisure and relaxation”, said the Deputy Minister who is a former basketball player.

Speaking at the same occasion, Tanzania Basketball Federation (TBF) Vice Chairman Phares Magesa commended Thabeet for sparing his time to come back home to train and inspire the youngsters. “I also commend Coca-Cola through Sprite for sponsorship and make this clinic possible”, said Magesa.

Assistant brand manager Coca-Cola Tanzania Warda Kimaro underlined the firm’s commitment to support sports in Tanzania and thanked the Government, TBF and Thabeet for staging the clinic.

“Sprite is extremely proud to be associated with basketball and we believe that this clinic will give the youth a better understanding of the basics of the game and supplement TBF’s concerted efforts to develop basketball in Tanzania”, said Kimaro.

Speaking after launching of the clinic, Thabeet drew optimism over basketball talents. “The only missing gap is lack of commitment among the players and lack of support from teachers and some of the parents”, he said.

The clinic focused on the fundamentals of basketball such as shooting, dribbling and passing. A similar clinic was held in Dar es Salaam in 2010.

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