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Afrobasket: NBBF President in Mali to boost D’Tigress morale

Musa Kida, President, Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), has arrived in Mali on Thursday to boost the morale of D’Tigress ahead of their quarter-final match of the 2017 Women Afrobasket Championship on Friday.

“The NBBF President, Kida, will touch down in Bamako, Mali on Thursday ahead of Friday’s game against Cote d’Ivoire to boost the mood in the camp of the D’Tigress,’’ an NBBF statement said in Abuja on Friday.

The NBBF President and sports lovers in the country have commended the impressive performance of D’Tigress against their age-long rivals, Senegal, in the match on Wednesday.

The last Group B match between the two teams ended 54-58 points in favour of Nigeria.

The statement also said that the team’s Coach, Sam Vincent, as well as the players had reacted to their victory against Senegal in a match dubbed “Final before final’’.

Vincent said they needed to keep celebrations to the barest minimum ahead of the crunchy quarter-final tie against Cote d’Ivoire that finished fourth in their group.

It said that Peter Ahmedu, the first Assistant Coach, praised the girls for defying all odds and showing a commendable level of resilience to maintain their lead till the end of the game.

It attributed the victory to due diligence and scouting reports put together by the technical crew.

“We were able to study the Senegalese off and on the court. The style we deployed was a different ball game to what they expected and it was very helpful,’’ the statement said.

It added that Senegal, the defending champions, were under a lot of pressure during the match.

NAN reports that Senegal did not recover from the debilitating injury inflicted by D’Tigress in the first two quarters that ended 26-34 points in spite of enjoying huge support from their Francophone fans.

Evelyn Akhator, star player of the match, was not deterred on the night in spite of the massive support for the opponents by a horde of Senegalese fans and by their French speaking hosts Mali.

The Dallas Wings player led by example with 15 points, 13 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal as the team confirmed it’s superiority over the Senegalese they defeated at the group stage of the 2015 edition.

Also, Atonye Nyingifa contributed with 8 rebounds, 5 assists and 6 points, Adaora Elonu gave the team 10 points, 4 assists and 5 rebounds.

Similarly, inspiring Kalu Ezinne, who was all over the court dictating the tempo, helped with 11 points.

The Nigerian team is expected by fans at home and abroad to return the nation to its days of glory in Women AfroBasket.

NAN


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