Pops Mensah-Bonsu, Former National Basketball Association (NBA) player, has held the maiden edition of his two-day basketball skills development camp to train and develop young players.
The camp is aimed at raising young players with potentials from Ghana to be trained and having the opportunity to play at the highest level to enhance Ghana’s basketball.
Mensah-Bonsu in an interview with the GNA Sports said, he was happy the first training had been a success adding that, initially they were to train 100 players each day but, the number had increased due to the high interest of players.
He added that it was a good start and bright future for Ghana’s basketball.
He said the players were trained on the fundamentals of basketball like; shooting, dribbling, defending, crossovers, attacking among others to enhance their skills.
He said Ghana had talents and giving back to the society, the opportunity he had, was a privilege and hope to continue until more Ghanaian basketballers reach the NBA.
Mensah-Bonsu said, due to the increased number of the players beyond their expectations they had challenges with T-shirts and accommodating all the players adding that, they intend increasing the number of participants next year to accommodate everyone.
Mr David Addo-Ashong, Chairman of the Ghana Basketball Association, commended him for the initiative and called on government to provide resources needed to push basketball in Ghana.
He said it was time people recognized that basketball was a sport that is popular among the youth thus when supported with proper training would take the country far.
Mr Yaw Sakyi, Chief Executive Officer of Rite Sports said, basketball in Ghana was growing, hence the need for collective efforts in pushing the game to cross boundaries.
He said the camp was important since it provided an opportunity for the young ones to interact with Mensah-Bonsu, who had been a role model for some of the players, which motivated them and enable them grow to become better basketball players.
Mr. Sakyi said, he was impressed with the attendance and commended Pops and his team and hoped others could follow his footsteps by bringing on board such initiatives.
Some of the Trainees like; Mr Kobby Acquah expressed his excitement and wished the camp could be for the year as it was a life time opportunity for him and Augustina Badu who appealed to the government to give maximum attention to basketball in the country, as it was equally a sport like football among others to enable them benefit from what they love to do.
The camp was organised by Pops Mensah-Bonsu in partnership with the Ghana Tourism Authority, Ministry of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Junior NBA and Rite Sports.