The Ugandan Pool Cranes bagged medals in the recently concluded 2019 Africa Pool Championships in Secunda, South Africa.
Uganda was represented in both men and ladies categories by 22 Pool Cranes members who jetted back to the country on Tuesday afternoon.
The Pool Cranes Ladies Team is the proud winner of gold in the continental Blackball tournament after beating several other countries.
Men’s team also put the best of their abilities and came second in the Blackball tournament.
In the Ladies Blackball singles tournament, Victoria Namuyanja came second and in the Men’s single tournament, Chandiga Ceaser scooped Bronze adding it to the Pool Cranes’ single Silver in the Chinese 8ball events.
Meanwhile Ladies Team Captain, Amina Faith Nganda, in her inaugural appearance at the continental event, made it to the third position.
Amina attributed their performance to commitment and exhaustive preparation before the event.
According to Pool Association of Uganda Tournament Secretary, Robert Mayanja, government failed to sponsor the Pool Cranes team at the last minute forcing them to solicit for support from private individual, Chris Rugari, the proprietor of SPA Financial Services and Array Metals.
“The Pool Association of Uganda is very grateful to Chris Rugari and his companies for making it possible for the team of 22 people to travel to South Africa and participate,” said Mayanja.
Rugari also reportedly helped the Pool Cranes with team uniforms and upkeep to Zimbabwe for the 2017 edition of the Africa Pool Championships.
“We owe success to Chris Rugari who singlehandedly trusted that we can deliver, and indeed we did not disappoint,” said Kayanja,
He appealed to government to start recognizing the achievements of Pool Cranes.
“We always excel but are never celebrated, like when Uganda won the 2016 African titles in both Ladies and Men team categories but we were ignored. Lack of government support is very disappointing to these very committed athletes, especially given that PAU consistently lobbied for more than 12 months ahead of this event,” noted Kayanja.
Pool Cranes Patron, Hans Rugari was appointed as Marketing Executive All Africa Pool Association (AAPA), which Uganda is a member. Hans promised to secure event funding to the Chinese 8ball World Cup event due in March 2020 and other subsequent AAPA events.
PAU is expected to engage Rwanda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, South Sudan, and Tanzania for regional Championship events in the near future.