Kenya ensured they earned a good finish on the final day of action at the second edition of the Africa Beach Games in Hammamet, Tunisia, with two medals from the 3×3 women’s basketball team and the girls’ tennis doubles team.

The duo of Faith Urasa and Shufaa Ruwa Changawa won bronze in tennis doubles early in the afternoon, before the basketball girls added a silver later in the evening.

The two medals took Kenya’s tally in Hammamet to five, an improvement of the first edition of the Games in 2019 when they managed just three.

In the women’s 3×3, the Kenyan team was edged out by fine margins by Mali, losing 18-10 after putting up a stellar fight with a good display.

“This means a lot to us because it shows just how hard we have worked. We are really delighted as a team. We did well against Mali because in the first game when we faced them in the group stages, the gap was wide. But we reduced it,” said Margaret Nerea.

Her sentiments were echoed by skipper Mary Lisa Omondi. “It was just small errors in defense and our passing under the rim that needed a bit of work. But we are proud of what we have achieved as a team.”

With 8:13 played, the Kenyan side had a scare with MaryAnne Nyagaki limping off with injury, the Malians leading 5-1. She had to sit out for some minutes, but gathered the energy to rise back to the court.

Kenya battled with move to within a point of the Malians, Nyagaki hitting two from beyond the arch to take the game 9-8 in favour of the Malians.

However, the West Africans capitalized on Kenya’s misfortune with their shots and layups as they went on a 7-0 scoring run to take the game to 16-8.

With under a minute and a half left, the fight was there for the Kenyan girls, but it wasn’t enough to take them across the line.

Urasa, Changawa deliver another medal for Team Kenya

Earlier on, Urasa and Changawa clinched bronze in the girls’ doubles category. The two were in a class of their own as they beat the home duo of Manel Loudhabachi and Sarah Louati by straight sets of 6-4, 6-2 to bag a medal for Team Kenya.

“We are really delighted because it was tough, especially with the crowd against us. We just psyched ourselves up and worked hard from the start,” Changawa, based in Switzerland quipped.

She added; “We are really delighted more so because we hadn’t trained together for long but we kept growing from match to match and by the time we were playing the bronze medal match, our understanding of each other was good.”

Urasa, 16, was delighted at her first-ever medal for Kenya in an international event. “I am so delighted because this is the first time that we are in this Games and we won a medal. It has given us a lot of motivation and an indication that if we train more, next time we will upgrade this to gold.”

The Kenyan girls dropped to the bronze medal match after losing 2-1 (6-3, 3-6, 10-8) to the duo of Sophie Catherine Alleaume and Marie Claude Francoise Mauritius on Thursday.

They had won against Morocco’s Safaa Bahmann and Inas Ziki 2-1, coming from a set down. The Kenyan girls closed the game in scores of 6-4, 6-3 having lost the first set 6-3.

The doubles team of Shangawa and Faiz.

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