4 March 2013

Uganda: It Is Time URA FC Was Audited

IT was one of those bad sports weekends for Uganda. URA Football Club had yet another unsuccessful bid to advance beyond the opening stages of a CAF competition.

Elsewhere in the world's gambling capital Las Vegas, there was more defeat for Uganda as boxer Sharif Bogere lost to Cuba's Richard Abril in a World Boxing Association title fight.

News of the death of veteran politician Eriya Kategaya added to the gloom. Kategaya, a regular tennis player some years back, passed on in Nairobi.

URA's exit from the continental and Bogere's defeat on points both call for serious thought.

In URA's case, the loss was the club's sixth failed attempt at advancing from the Confederation of African Football's club competition opening rounds.

For a club with the kind of resource that URA has, such performance calls for a serious audit.

It is definitely time someone explained why Uganda's most facilitated football club has consistently failed to impress on the continent.

CLASS OF 2010: URA squad that participated in the CAF Champions League in 2010

You have certainly not forgotten KCC, with a small fraction of the amount of resources at the tax collectors' disposals, advancing a step further than URA in 2008.

Some of those trying to make a case for URA cite chaos in the local league. True, there has lately been anarchy in the Super League.

But a look at Egypt waters down this argument. Egyptian giants Al Ahly won the last CAF Champions League with no local league to show last season.

Interestingly, URA's leadership doesn't seem bothered by the status quo. You only have to wait for next season to realise that the same cycle will continue with business going on normally at Nakawa.

As for Bogere's defeat, there is all reason to be more optimistic. At 24, the prize fighter is yet to get to his peak.

Compared to URA, Bogere is also performing in a much higher orbit and there is all reason to congratulate him for having soared to such heights.

But even then, a close look Bogere's fight reveals that the Ugandan pugilist has serious issues with taller opposition. Bogere, who stands at 5' 6", always rushed at Abril only to be hit by hard punches.

Bogere must therefore have serious drills on how to step in while fighting taller opponents.

If he can't master this move, then he is still in serious trouble given that most of the top fighters in his division are taller than him.

But unlike URA, which continues in the same cycle every season, I see Bogere coming off as a much better fighter in his next context.

He is the kind of fighter who always strives to better his last performance.

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