PANTHERS' VISIT

1:14 PM ReboundGH 5 Comments

Q+A WITH VINCENT AZAN-GBIOK
...Panthers' captain and de facto leader
by Theophilus Mensah

Rebound GH visited the Sakumono Premier Panthers' training session last Thursday to have a feel of how they work out and most importantly to have a chit chat with Vincent, their captain about his team and " word on the street". Like most teams in this dear-nonpaying-league-of-ours-where-everybody-does-everything-for-the-love-of-the-game, they have their own problems to go with the fun.


ReboundGH: When was the team established?
Vincent Azan-Gbiok
: This is our third season, so it was in 2008?

RGH:
How was the first set of players put together?

VAG:
It was during a competition held here by the management, we just came together as a group to also compete and we played very well, beating the strongest team in the tourney as at then(which featured Armah, Patrick Gameli of CEPS, Djimatey and several other very good guys). So at the end , i think the manager was impressed with our game and he spoke to us about forming a club. Then we got a coach and here are we now.

RGH
: Your team is currently 9th on the standings and face possible relegation if the league is to end without you stepping up. What are your plans to make sure you make it to the first division.

VAG
: We are basically going to try our best to win our last three games to be able to make.Most of our guys are now back from school and we think we can make it.

RGH
: What's been the team's greatest challenge so far his year?

VAG
: The absence of a coach, lack of constant practice because most of the guys are either busy with work or school.

RGH
: That brings up the question, where's your coach?

VAG
: The thing is we the playing body don't really know what happened, but i think he left as a result of a misunderstanding between him and the management of the team; possibly financial.

RGH:
Most of the times in your games there seems to be alot of confussion and misunderstanding even when you are winning, what causes that problem?

VAG
: There's no coach, what do you expect. Everybody thinks he's got the right idea for the game and then the talking starts. But then that's us, am sure you even noticed it during practice.We were friends before we became teammates so we as united as ever, and stuff like that is bound to happen.

RGH:
So have you tried to get a new coach?

VAG:
Yes, we did, I actually did talk to Edmundo but he wasn't willing to take the role.

RGH:
Didn't you think he wasn't ready to coach you because there was no financial benefit involved?

VAG:
Ooh.....for us our chairman is ready to pay, but then i didn't really know his reasons
RGH: What are your greatest assets as a team?
VAG:
...hmmm, i think player for player, we are one of the best teams in the league. Everybody in the team has got something to offer on game days, you can't really point out anybody who is a liability for the team. Take Kevin, Kiki, Kwame, Daniel....in fact everybody ha their own role on the team.

RGH:
Weaknesses?

VAG:
Lack of frequent training, most of the guys just can't make time to practice, am working now, other guys are in school, the time is not just there. But there's one thing, some of us were banned from training on this facility for sometime.

RGH:
How come?

VAG:
You could say it was on moral grounds, we came here to train on the Easter Monday and the guy guy who was supposed to open the gate wasn't around, so we actually waited for over an hour and then decided to jump the fence, so management heard about it and the punishment was meted out.

RGH:
What is your greatest achievement as team?

VAG:
Thinks for a while.....err..i think it was last season, we had a really great start, we went 6-0 to start the season.

RGH: What has been the worst or saddest moment for the team?
VAG:
I think it was the fence flipping incident, we actually had a couple of issues with management after that and we felt quit bad about it.

RGH:
Which has been your toughest match ever?

VAG:
I think the match against Police last season, we actually won at the buzzer with Kevin's shot on Kwame's assist.It was a hell of a match.

RGH:
Easiest match ever played?

VAG:
Just this seasin against the Turbo Jets...just too easy.

RGH:
Which is your favorite court in the league?

VAG:
think I like the prisons court, the floor is very good compared to Lebanon house and I think I like the hoop too, Lebanon house is something, just can't explain.

RGH:
Lets get a little bit personal. sometimes you tend to take over games to the dismay of your team mates,any special reasn why you do so?

VAG:
...aarrrr.....yea, am more of a 2, but then the ball ends up with me more often on the O, not being a big passer , I take it to the hole or take the shot if am open. but then sometimes someone needs to some extra work, like there was a game we were lacking, i took over and we won and ended up with 34 at the end.

RGH: Well, word on the street is, Cape Coast Hoops management are trying to get possession of a couple of your players, any ideas who they could be?
VAG:
yea, I've heard about it but this is our league and nobody has signed any contracts with anybody so if someone wants to play for another team, fair enough. As to those who might be going am really sure, but i think Kevin could be one of them.

RGH:
Thanks so much for having us.

VAG:
Most welcome, thanks too.

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5 comments:

  1. Frank talk XRay, u guys are one of the most entertaining and well behave bunch(hope am right). if anything does happen know that Hoops gat ur back....keep ballin n keep the spirit!!! The Pantzees

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  2. by the way, RGH, great stuff there!!!

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