Mustapha Dogo, the coach of Nasarawa Amazons basketball club, on Thursday urged the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) to improve in communicating with club owners about the Zenith Bank Female League.
Dogo said in Abuja that it was wrong that they were given a one-week notice to begin preparations for the 2018 league.
“We have started preparations for this year’s league. Though we don’t know when the league will commence, but we don’t want the mistake of the past to recur.
“We started preparing for last year’s edition very late, and it was not good for us,’’ he said.
The coach recalled that his team in 2018 received a sudden memo from the NBBF that the league would start after one week.
“We plead that they should give us at last one month notice, if not two or three months, so that we will have enough time to intensify preparations and train adequately.
“The state government, who are our owners and sponsors, will also have enough time to approve our participation in the league.
“We cannot participate in the league if they did not give us the permission and the approval and most teams are sponsored by state governments,’’ he said.
The coach also said it was heart-warming that the league has been divided into two.
“I’m happy that the new board has divided the league into two conferences — the Atlantic and the Savannah Conference — just like the way it is in the men’s premiership. This is a welcome development in female basketball.
“The best four in both conferences will meet each other in the final round, which is better than before where the same set of teams in the conference side will meet each other and it has become a yearly affair.
“This new development will also strengthen the teams in the conferences and it will make them stronger for future encounters,’’ he said.
Dogo said his team had set for itself a target of featuring in the last round of the 2019 league.
“We have set for ourselves a target of finishing among the best four teams which will represent the Atlantic Conference in the final round.
“We are tired of being at the same level. We will work hard to change our position in this year’s league.
The National Women Basketball League, known as Zenith Women Basketball League, is the top-level women basketball club competition in Nigeria.
It is the women’s version of the Nigeria Basketball Premier League organised by the NBBF.
The league also determines Nigeria’s representatives at the FIBA Africa Women’s Clubs Champions Cup.(NAN)