The Friday Night Lights (FNL) basketball season is set to return this Friday, 8th December at the Lugogo Hockey Pitch in Kampala. This year’s edition was launched on Monday at NRG Radio premises at Clement Hill Road in Kampala.
The sports-meets-showbiz outing was last held in early 2019 and now the event will mark a return to the basketball scene after over four years of no action. This will be the 9th edition.
Tom Ocamringa, the FNL Team Leader revealed that unlike the past editions which have been held in the early months of a new year – over a six or so week’s period, this season will be shorter to accommodate the changed National Basketball League (NBL) calendar.
“We are having three Fridays, don’t miss any of them! 8th of December, 15th of December and finally 22nd of December are the dates for this season,” Ocamringa said adding that; “this will be short and sweet. This time we are making it even better, we shall have 5 on 5 mainstream basketball, the hype we are going to create to make people enjoy and understand basketball is going to be amazing.”
Castle Lite Beer is the headline sponsor of not only this year’s edition but the next two as well.
“This is not the first time Castle Lite Beer is partnering with FNL to thrill the lovers of basketball and entertainment. As a brand that appeals to the youth we are always seeking out those products that align with us; and FNL fits the bill,” said Ibrahim Nkwanga, Nile Breweries Limited (NBL) Trade Marketing Representative.
He added that; “For the next three Fridays, let us all Unlock our week’s stress, Refresh with an extra cold Castle Lite Beer as we Enjoy the beautiful game of basketball at FNL.”
NRG, the leading youth-centric radio in Uganda is the FNL vibes partner.
“NRG is everything FNL is about and more. Expect much more fan and player interaction not only the radio but across our social media platforms. This will be an FNL experience like never before,” said Christine Mawadri, NRG Head of Business.
FNL has been Uganda’s premiere sports-entertainment event since 2011; offering a unique blend of basketball, music, food and beverages and all forms of entertainment.
To increase participation in the 9th edition, FNL2023 will see activation drives carried out in Entebbe and at Abja Basketball Court in Naalya, Kampala.
During the event proper there will be more fan engagements including challenges and gift hamper giveaways.
The winning team and excelling players will also receive an assortment of gifts.
*Team Melo: For the Proudly African, this is your team. Captained by Saidi “Carmelo” Amisi expect Team Melo to carry with it a flambouyant, boisterous Pan-African vibe – drums and colourful outfits to boot. As a KIU Titans star in the NBL, expect the university students in his corner, as well.
*Team Afande: An enlisted soldier with the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF), Henry Okoth is that ‘cool’ Army Guy that seeks to demystify the armed forces with his team. He is also a KIU Titans player.
*Team Comfort: Led by social media queen and JKL Dolphins star Leticia Awor, Team Comfort is representing Entebbe and all the social media gang.
*Team Drileba: Of course this is City Oilers’ star guard Tony Drileba’s crew of businesslike purists like the captain himself.
*Team Ekon: Speedster Brenda Ekone leads this group with her Nkumba University affiliation likely to earn the team a students’ following. She turns out for JKL Dolphins in the NBL as well.
*Team Iman: Expect style, fashion and glamour from this posse led by national team (Gazelles) and JKL Dolphins point-guard Ritah Imanishiwe.
*Team Soro: To his friends Godfrey Soro is the party-starter and anticipate nothing less from his squad. The Namuwongo Blazers star also enjoys a large following from the South Sudan community.
*Team Wazee: Largely comprised of middle-aged ex-players, the Wazee will be out to prove that they have still got it.
Meanwhile, the now defunct Team Zama are the defending champions following their 20-21 win against three-time winners Team Ikong in the 2019 final.
Below are more pics from the press launch of FNL2023