MBA raises €3,015 in Christmas Bonanza
Three words can be used to describe the first edition of the MBA Christmas Bonanza – solidarity, success and spectacular.
In front of a packed Ta’ Qali pavilion last Thursday, the Malta Basketball Association (MBA) collected the sum of €3,015 in aid of the Malta Community Chest Fund during an afternoon of basketball activities.
The programme kicked off with mini-basket matches and reached its climax with the All-Star game that saw the Maltese national team beating the foreign selection who ply their trade in local competitions.
Six clubs took part in the mini-basket series – Starlites, Hibs, Athleta, Siġġiewi, Depiro and Loyola. They fielded teams in the U-8 and U-10 categories.
Another event in programme was the women’s All-Star game.
This match pitted against each other the Malta national team, coached by Sandro Farrugia, and a National League selection led by Charles Bonnici which also included foreign players Lena Gipson and Alexandra Ratomska.
The Maltese team led by nine points at half-time, 30-21, and succeeded in retaining the lead until the final buzzer to win 52-49.
A much-awaited game was that between coaches and referees.
Joe Coleiro was in charge of the match officials’ team while Val Drury mentored the coaches side. This match was officiated by Siġġiewi BC president David Agius and Athleta club secretary Edmund Farrugia.
The game, played on two sessions of ten minutes running time, was won by the coaches 15-13 but the brightest note was the friendly atmosphere that reigned among both sides.
Meanwhile, the veterans’ game had the likes of Kevin Decesare, Ivan Attard, Ivan Micallef, Ivan Grech, Paul Sultana, John Tabone, Joe Galea and Raphael Aloisio making their showing on court.
The match of the day was the All-Star game between the men’s national team, under the guidance of coach Paolo Di Fonzo, and the overseas players.
The Maltese were leading by 14 points at the start of the third session, 45-31 but the overseas selection soon got back on level terms, 45-45.
In the end, however, it was the national team that claimed the honours as they won the final session 16-10 to run out 61-55 winners.
Loyola’s US player Rashanti Harris won the slam dunk competition after a series of powerful and spectacular shots.