Ntinda Giants team

2020 Pool Season:

Champions:

  • Men: Ntinda Giants
  • Ladies: Upper Volta

Top Scorers:

  • Men: Glorious Ssenyonjo (Ntinda Giants) – 59 Goals
  • Ladies: Rukia Naiga (Kampala Central) – 22 Goals

2020 was a pool season with less action than normal, due to COVID-19 global pandemic.

With three thirds of action played, Ntinda Giants and Upper Volta Pool clubs were crowned as the champions of the senior and ladies’ pool leagues respectively.

Five matches had remained to be played for the men and the ladies had 6 more to go, surpassing the 75 percent mark of action.

“The country wide lockdown on Sport and recreation by government, led to a resolution by the Pool Association of Uganda (PAU) Executive Committee to discontinue the league and declare the leaders as champions with current tables standing as final.” Peter Kyobe, Publicist, Pool Association of Uganda.

Ntinda Giants Pool players and officials celebrating with their trophy and winners’ medals

About Ntinda Giants:

Founded in 2017 as a “B” team of Hotpool, the team competed in the 2018 Pool League one and gained promotion to the Senior League.

They then sought independence from Hotpool under the stewardship of Eng. Ronnie Okello who acquired the services of Ibra Sejjemba, Alfred Gumikiriza, Joseph Kasozi, Glorious Sennyonjo and Geoffrey Settumba.

 The calibre of these players made the club favorites for the title as the club changed name from “Hotpool B” to Ntinda Giants at the start of 2019.

This multi-talented Ntinda Giants won the league without losing a single match.

In so doing, their kingpin Gumikiriza overtook Wasswa Kayiiya as the most decorated League player in PAU history, with 8 Senior League titles and 1 League one title.

His team-mate Sennyonjo scored 59 goals to become top Scorer for  the second time in only 3 years of league participation since 2017.

Glorious Ssenyonjo finished as top scorer

He also top scored that year, came 5th in 2018 before regaining top spot in 2019-2020. Upper Volta’s male team came competitively second and the Eastern region’s finest- Team Ronz from Jinja City finished in third position.

Upper Volta team ladies

About Upper Volta:

Upper Volta; (Also known as Team BobMale, after their boss- Male Bob) were the last club standing in the first Independent Ladies’ League.

Only founded at the start of the year, the club signed top players in Rita Nimusiima, Zaimatt Nabafu, Sheila Ankah, Jacinta Kajubi, and others, a squad will helped them overpower Kampala Central pool club, Ntinda Giants and 5 other clubs to another unbeaten season in the Ladies league.

In so doing, the club’s  top scorer and second overall – Nabafu won a first league title which had eluded her for 9 consecutive seasons since 2010, even by her very high standards.

Her team mate and National champion Rita Nimusiima equaled eternal rival  Victoria Namuyanja as the most decorated player in the Ladies’ league after winning a 6th league title with 6 different clubs; including Hotpool,  Mambule,  Galz, Samona, CKI, and Upper Volta.

On the other hand, her team captain Namuganza achieved her own piece of history, becoming the first team captain to lead a team to triple league success for 3 consecutive years.

She had previously captained CKI to 2 league titles.

Kampala Central’s Rukia Naiga was named top scorer with 22 goals out of a possible 24,  after an almost perfect season in which she topped the group in terms of goals, aggregates, points and Break-and-finish games.

PAU Chairman Bob Trubish pledged to resume the Association’s activities in full swing upon the end of lockdown, adding that it’s tricky to resume now due to the costs of the bi-weekly mandatory Covid tests to all involved persons.

The 2019-2020 season was the 20th  year of the men’s pool league and the 10th  for ladies.

David Isabirye is a senior staff writer for Kawowo Sports where he covers most of the major events.

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