NSF 2020 (Basketball): Race for Men’s gold goes to the wire after Lagos dramatic loss; Rain interrupts Women’s third place tie

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Purists are watching with bated breath as the Basketball event of the ongoing Edo 2020 National Sports Festival reached its crescendo today in the men and women’s categories.

The basketball event continued to live up to its pre-competition hype despite Rivers State’s last minute withdrawal.

With five teams competing for honours in the men’s category, games were played in a round robin format to give all teams equal chances of fighting for the gold, silver and bronze medals on offer.

Gombe who fell in the final to last edition of the festival FCT who hosted the last edition of the festival held in 2018 came back stronger to erase all doubts with three wins so far and a last game against Lagos on Monday could see them scoop the gold medal.

In their first game, Gombe led by Coach Abdulrahman Mohammed left nobody in doubt about their intention of going a step further than their 2018 achievement after defeating Kano state 66-59 points

They followed in similar fashion defeating host-Edo 68-60 points as they followed up with another win against Kwara state, 76-56 points.

For Kano, they bounced back easily against Edo recording an emphatic 77-57pts victory before another 94-66pts win against hapless Kwara state.

Lagos defeated Kwara (103-52), Edo (75-60) but lost to Kano in a make or mar game played on Sunday. Lagos will have another chance to lay claim to the gold medal if they manage to beat Gombe on Monday on the last day of hostility.

Although it was a close game, Kano emerged victorious 89-86pts to record their third victory in four games. A win of more than four points difference could see early pacesetters, Gombe slip to the bronze medal while Lagos and Kano will settle for the gold and silver medals in that order but if Gombe are able to secure their fourth straight win, Lagos may drop to the silver medal if they avoided a big defeat while Kano will capture the bronze. Kano seemed out of reckoning for the gold medal but still very much alive to claim either the silver or bronze medal.

In the event that teams are tied on the same points at the end of the games, points differences will be adopted while head-to-head will be the last option to determine the top three teams.

Meanwhile, Lagos state will meet Bayelsa state in the final of the women’s event at 4pm on Monday, 12th of April at Emotan College, Wire Road, Benin.

The women’s final game will be preceded by the completion of the third-place game between host, Edo, and Kano this morning. The game was stopped at the end of the second quarter due to heavy rain. Kano was leading 35-17 points before it was halted. The third and fourth quarters will hold as from 9.00 am.

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