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D’Tigers overcome Mali in Afrobasket opener, to face Kenya next

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Nigeria’s D’Tigers started their 2021 Afrobasket championship on a winning note after a dominant 81-73pts win against a determined Malian team.

The win, which was the first after their last win against Argentina in the run-up to the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Olympics, saw a young Nigerian team captained by Stephen Domingo bagging the maximum points.

After running to a 28-12pts lead in the first quarter, fatigue induced turnovers and wayward shooting saw the Malians coming back within a touching distance.

But D’Tigers, led by coach Mike Brown, were able to cling to a 44-43 points lead heading into halftime.

Read Also: Brown banks on D’Tigers’ offensive prowess as FIBA Afrobasket begins

Third quarter saw Nigeria shooting themselves to a 71-53pts lead as they did enough to hold off the marauding Malians in the fourth quarter to close out the game.

Benjamin Emelogu who helped the team with 18pts, 4 assists and 8 rebounds had an amazing day on the court posting a 60.0% accuracy from the three point line where he got all his points from 10 attempts.

Captain Domingo who was recently with the San Antonio Spurs during the NBA Summer League added 16pts, 5 assists and 5 rebounds.

Uzodinma Utomi scored 15pts while TK Edogi was the highest rebounder for the team with a total of 12 and contributing 5pts offensively in the game.

Nigeria will face Kenya in their next game at the Afrobasket Championship holding in Kigali, Rwanda.

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