Nigeria men’s basketball team, D’Tigers have rounded off their 2021 FIBA Afrobasket championship qualifiers without losing a game.
The one-time African champions, who already sealed qualification for the tournament with two games left, wrapped up the qualifying series with a big 76-56 points win over Mali on Friday.
D’Tigers defeated South Sudan on Wednesday to secure ticket for the finals before beating Rwanda in another exciting encounter on Thursday.
The team finished strong atop group B on a 6-0 run, being spearheaded by Ike Diogu, who posted a double-double performance with 20pts and 11 assists against Mali.
With a 42.9 field goal percentage and 3 made treys from 7 attempted shots, Diogu ensured a smooth victory for the team whose immediate focus will be the 2020 Olympics and Afrobasket preparations.
Michael Gbinije ended with 10pts, 5 rebounds and 2 steals as Keith Omoerah continued his rich form in the national colors with 10pts, 4rebs and 3steals on a day that all 10 players who stepped on court scored at least a point.
D’Tigers, the number one team in Africa, were way better as they out rebounded their opponents 48-39, scoring 15pts from turnovers as against 14 by the Malians.
The team scored 16 fast break points, Mali only managed 7 while the Tokyo 2020 Olympics bound team sank 18 second chance points to cap off an impressive win.
With the win, D’Tigers have now extended their unbeaten run in competitive games to nine.
Nigeria topped group B with 12 maximum points. New entrants, South Sudan finished second, Mali third and the host of the 2021 Afrobasket- Rwanda finished bottom of the group.
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