The national basketball men’s team Kenya Morans Power forward Aerial Okal is very confident he will have a great campaign at his new club Al Bashaer, where he signed
a six month’s contract with the the hope of extending his stay at the Oman outfit.
The much-traveled player who has been a constant and influential figure in the national team, helping them to qualify for the 2021 Afrobasket tournament for the first time in 28 years after shocking Angola 74-73 in Yaounde, will be hoping to replicate his glittering show in Cameroon at his new employers.
“Season already started we are three games in. My team has won all the games
I was here a month ago but I didn’t play I just went through the logistics,
Medical and registration plus getting my residency and labor card. Then I left for Cameroon national team assignment. Am now back finished my isolation and waiting to play this weekend.Looking forward to an excellent start and good progress going forward ” he affirmed.
The towering Kenyan athlete known for his heroic exploits on the court that has earned him the nickname ‘the doctor’ amongst his sporting peers is banking on his wealth of experience in professional basketball overseas to blend well with his teammates which is essential for chemistry and good performance of the team.
The former coastal based Kenya Basketball Classic national league side Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) player who did not have a prolific stint as expected at his Algerian previous club due to complications brought by Covid-19 pandemic is roaring for a stylish comeback.
Okal arrived in North Africa in January last year joining local side US Setif but even before settling well the pandemic became a global monster leaving the country with no option but to force a lock-down while also barring him from returning home.
“My first game here will mark one year since I last played my professional game last year in Algeria and it’s a good feeling to be back.Al Bashaer is a new team in the league and the management has invested in us a lot and a lot is expected of us.We believe we are built to win now and we are playing like it,with three wins so far we sit top of the league but we are yet to face the big teams.Have been working very hard and I hope given a chance by the coach I will deliver. The boys are in great spirits and we are gelling well which is key towards success of the team” he added.
The Kenyan International made his first sojourn out of the country in 2005 at a tender age and has previously played in Oman for three seasons. He has been passionate about pushing for the growth of the game locally through encouragement of home-based players getting an opportunity to play abroad among other options.
“The more we go out the more exposure we get to very high quality competition and better facilities which we normally don’t get here at home. In the long run, this will be good for the national team because everyone will improve in quality,” noted Okal.
The NBA is the top of the mountain for any basketball player with professional aspirations. While that is where one can find the most money and fame, there are also vibrant options in other markets overseas with Okal stating that his focus to play the game at the big stage is unstoppable.