Small forward Claire Lamunu says that she is happy to be back in the National Basketball League.
The Gazelles star played in the local league on Saturday for the first time since leaving for the States in 2014.
“Its good to be back, its been a while and I know a lot has changed but I’m excited to see how the season will go,” Lamunu told The-SportsNation.
“I have great memories here. Of course having been able to win the Championship with KCCA is a great memory. I know a lot has changed since then.”
Since the 2014 title when Lamunu was named MVP, KCCA Leopards has lost three NBL finals in a row. In the last two seasons, they have fallen to UCU and JKL Lady Dolphins in semis.
“I have been following the local league but not as much,” Lamunu adds. “I’d mainly see social media posts from FUBA or other people. But I haven’t watched an actual game in a very long time.”
She left KCCA having secured a Basketball scholarship AF Vanguard University of Southern California.
After then, she has had spells in Portugal with Boa Viagem and Finland’s Kuovala Club.
Lamunu adds: “Basketball is a game of adaptation for sure. I have had to unlearn and learn a lot of things a long the journey. My style of play is different from back then for sure. I understood what my role is in a team and I try to do it well.”
On her time at KCCA since returning, Lamunu explains: “We get along great. I didn’t know a lot of the players, so I’ve met many new people. The practice sessions have been good. Everyone on the team works hard and I love that. Of course it takes time to learn how everyone plays with each other, so we will keep growing with practices and games.”
On Saturday at KIU court, Lamunu shot 5-of-7 from the field to garner 13 points and eight rebounds as KCCA Leopards beat JKL Lady Dolphins 58-55.
The defending champions led 15-5 after the first quarter but KCCA fought back and won tej subsequent quarters (20-12, 15-11, 18-17) to win a three-point game.
Leticia Awor scored 16 points and new signing Rebecca Susan Aanyu added nine rebounds in the winning effort.
With Lamunu, many KCCA Leopards fans believe this is the year to add to their trophy cabinet.
“Haha! If I could look into the future I’d probably tell you the answer to that, but only God can do that,” Lamunu says of KCCA title chances.
“What I will say though is that I’m sure every team will be competing for a title, so we will have to work hard and be consistent in order to have a chance at the title. It’s a war, not a battle. So one step at a time for us.”