KIU, Main Campus - The National Basketball League was suspended early last month following the upsurge in COVID-19 cases in the country. Collins Kakwezi had an online chat with KIU Titans coach Brian Wathum to get his opinion on his team’s standing.
How did the sudden announcement of the suspension of the league affect KIU Titans’ momentum?
Of course, the suspension did not only affect Titans. The league too was affected a lot.
What plans did you put in place to make sure the team stays focused on basketball regardless of the challenges posed by the lockdown? How are the lads doing with their training?
There’s no training happening. We are observing the presidential directives of lockdown. Currently, the players are being encouraged to do a lot of personal workouts to maintain their strength and conditioning.
The team was starting to gel - with the other players (Okall, Balungu et al) starting to contribute more. Do you think they can start off from where they left off before the lockdown?
With the right mentality and proper practice etiquette, we can continue to get better once the league resumes.
Titans have improved by leaps and bounds. But do you think we have what it takes to unseat City Oilers?
Currently, Oilers are the best team in Uganda. It will take a lot to change that but as Titans we will continue to work on us and hopefully, once the season resumes, we will continue to play KIU basketball.
What do you think the team can do differently to go one more step than 2017 and bring the title home?
Keep working hard at practice and then take each game as it comes.
You have been hailed as a great manager by players like Okall and Aden during interviews with this website. What virtues do you instill in the boys that make them want to go the extra mile for the team?
I just like to hold my players accountable for their actions and decisions. The team has a lot of talent which we need to maximize, so staying ready and focused is important. Thanks to the players, coaching staff and management, we are trying our best to do that.
How have the university administration and team board helped Titans to become one of the biggest teams in the league?
They do their part every day and we do our best to do ours. So, it’s a win-win for both parties.
What are the short-term and long-term aspirations of KIU Titans and you as the coach?
We just want to be the best version of ourselves and improve every day. Hopefully, everything falls into place.
What message do you have for the KIU basketball fraternity especially the fans and wellwishers?
Thanks for the support. Let’s do our best to stay safe and when we return, we shall continue from where we stopped.