Tethering towards the January 3 commencement date, the ninth edition of Ghana’s biggest basketball competition, Sprite Ball, is set to have qualified 26 senior high schools compete against each other.
Basketballghana.com’s Yaw Adjei-Mintah looks at the regional representatives for the upcoming Rite Sports organized tournament which takes place between January 3-7, 2016 at the El-Wak Stadium in Accra.
One of six regional representatives in next year’s championship, the Ashanti Region is primed to improve on the commendable achievements schools from the region have chalked since the region was first drafted into the tournament in 2009.
Schools from the region’s capital Kumasi, have been ever present as representatives. This year’s regional ambassadors unsurprisingly are Prempeh College and Opoku Ware in the boys’ division and defending national champions T.I.Ahmediyya and Kumasi Girls’ Senior High School in the girls’ division.
Their latest conquest in the regional games came at the expense of bitter rivals Opoku Ware who couldn’t get past the guys in green in the final game.
Affectionately called “Amanfo)”, Prempeh beat out the likes of Kumasi Anglican School, Kumasi High School and Kumasi Academy to the regional title.
The school’s silver medal still holds as the region’s best achievement in the boys’ division; an achievement which they are quick to remind Opoku Ware.
Come January, the current roster will hope to go a step further by winning what would be the region’s first male division national title.
Opoku Ware School
The school is on a mission to break the jinx of faltering in the semifinals from the last two editions of the tournament.
The 2014 bronze medal win came on the back of splendid performances from Kwaku Wusu Ansah who was voted Fans Most Valuable Player of the tournament. Gideon Boakye and Kwabena Poku Asamoah formed the complementary pieces of the legendary 2014 team.
Losing out on the regional championship again should not sway attention from the immense potential of this team as they look to top rival Prempeh’s silver medal haul.
The historic victory gave Ashanti Region its first ever national title. The school’s record breaking feat was more commendable since it was their first appearance in the tournament.
Demonstrating that their title win in the past year was no fluke, T.I. AMASS successfully defended the title in 2015 edition by beating the likes of perennial favorites Aggrey Memorial, St. Mary’s and Wesley Girls High School.
The ladies from the Garden City look forward to keep the trophy for keeps by a winning a third title as they head into the tournament as overwhelming favorites.
Kumasi Girls’ School
The region’s relatively unknown side ousted big names including St.Louis Senior High, Yaa Asantewaa and Kumasi Wesley Girls’ High School in the qualifiers to book a ticket for the tournament.
The team’s battle-readiness will be tested in the finals as they come up against a highly competitive pack including former champions Aggrey Memorial.