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Christine Akinyi jump shot earns Kenya Lioness first AfroBasket win

BASKETBALL By Washington Onyango | September 20th 2021
Kenya Lioness forward Mercy Wanyama in past action against Egypt. [Courtesy-FIBA]

Lioness center Christine Akinyi scored a last gasp jump shot as Kenya came from behind to edge Cape Verde 61-58 in their last Group A match of the ongoing women’s AfroBasket in Cameroon.

The win keeps alive their hopes of Kenya making the quarter-finals, but that will be determined late Monday after Cameroon face Cape Verde.

After a slow start to the perennial African women’s basketball tournament that saw Kenya lose 74-50 at the hands of Cameroon on Saturday, the East Africans bounce back in style stunning Cape Verde at the death.

Lioness moved on top of Group “A” with three points from two matches followed by Cameroon (two points) and Cape Verde (one point).

US based baller Victoria Reynolds, who was kept quiet in the opening match with two points, led the onslaught with 17 points, five assists and four steals followed by Christine Akinyi with 14 points and five rebounds.

Reynolds also had five rebounds and the game second-most highest efficiency of 20% behind only to Cape Verde’s Joseana Vaz with 22%.

Mercy Wanyama and Selina Okuma followed with eight points, 10 rebounds and seven points, two rebounds respectively in the win.

The win also saw Kenya avenge their 63-41 loss to Cape Verde when they last played at the same level in the ninth place playoff way back in 2013.

Kenya Lioness Christine Akinyi (right) in action against Cape Verde. [FIBA]

In the last four meetings so far, Kenya have now bagged three wins and one defeat with the wins coming in 2007, 2013 and 2021.

Kenya will now await to know if they would proceed to the quarters directly or play quarterfinals qualification round tomorrow.

The winners of Groups A, B, C, and D qualify automatically to the Quarter-Finals while the remaining eight teams will compete in the Qualification Round to the Quarter-Finals on Wednesday, September 22.

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