NIC's defender Joan Nampungu is part of the provisional team Credit: Reg Caldecott

In preparation for the upcoming Commonwealth Games due in Birmingham, England, the Uganda Netball national team (She Cranes) will commence training on Sunday, 22nd May 2022 at the Kamwokya Community Sports Arena in Kampala.

The training sessions come at an opportune timing when Uganda has just successfully hosted the 2022 East African clubs netball championship at the same venue.

Fred “Salongo” Mugerwa, the She Cranes head coach announced a strong provisional squad of 30 players during a briefing at Uganda Netball Federation (UNF) office on Aga Khan Building-Old Kampala.

It will be a battle for the treasured slots on the national team as the competition rages on given the players summoned per department.

Reigning Uganda Netball Federation league Most Valuable Player (MVP) Shakira Nassaka from Weyonje club is among the players in defence.

She will battle for the treasured berth alongside the experienced Joan Nampungu, Lillian Ajio, Sandra Nambirige, Shaffie Nalwanja, Stellah Nanfuka and others.

With the exceptional of two UK based players Peace Proscovia (Surrey Storm) and Mary Nuba Cholholk (Lightening), a bulk of the other 28 players are home based.

Peace and Nuba are among the 9 shooters on the provisional team with veteran Rachael Nanyonga, Asina Kabendera, Christine Namulumba, Hanisha Muhammed, Stella Oyella, Irene Eyaru and Shadia Nassanga also available.

Towering goalshooter and captain Peace Proscovia
Mary Cholhok Nuba Credit: Tara St Clair

Midcourt:

The National Insurance Corporation (NIC) trio of Margret Bagala, Conchepta Desire Birungi and Sarah Nakiyunga are up in direct completion with Prisons’ Jesca Achan, Alicia Wasagali as well as KCCA’s Annet Najjuka and Norah Lunkuse.

After a fortnight, the training squad will be trimmed to 20 players.

We are time bad, we would have started long time ago, at the beginning of this month but due to East Africa Club championship, we delayed. But we have agreed that our training will commence on Sunday, 22nd May 2022 at Kamwokya Community Sports Centre. We are going to start with non-residential training, going to have two sessions, morning and evening and then we shall have a residential training for two to three weeks before heading to Birmingham.

Fred Mugerwa, She Cranes Head coach
She Cranes head coach Fred Mugerwa (extreme right)

Uganda is pooled in group B with the likes of England (hosts), Northern Ireland, African rivals Malawi, New Zealand as well as Trinidad and Tobago.

Provisional squad:

Defenders:

Shakira Nasaka (Weyonje), Florence Aduniya (NIC), Shakira Nakanyike (Police), Muteesi Nassimu (NIC), Rose Namutebi (KCCA), Lillian Ajio (Prisons), Viola Asingo (Prisons), Joan Nampungu – Assistant Captain (NIC), Sandra Nambirige (KCCA), Shaffie Nalwanja (KCCA), Privas Kayeny (NIC), Stella Nanfuka (Prisons), Faridah Kadondi (Weyonje), Maureen Winfred Nankya (NIC)

Shooters:
Peace Proscovia – Captain (Storm Surrey, UK), Mary Nuba Cholhok (Lightening, UK), Hanisha Muhammed (KCCA), Stella Oyella (NIC), Asina Kabendera (Weyonje), Christine Kago Namulumba (Prisons), Irene Eyaru (KCCA), Shadia Nassanga (KCCA), Rachael Nanyonga (NIC)

Mid-Court:

Sarah Nakiyunga (NIC), Margret Bagala (NIC), Jesca Achan (Prisons), Annet Najjuka (KCCA), Alicia Wasagali (Prisons), Desire Conchepta Birungi (NIC), Norah Lunkuse (KCCA)

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

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