D’Tigers’ camp opens for 2021 AfroBasket qualifiers
The Nigeria Men’s National Basketball team (D’ Tigers) camping for the final FIBA AfroBasket 2021 qualifiers slated to hold in Monastir, Tunisia, will open in the second week of February. The competition will hold from February 17 to 21.
After successfully holding the second phase of the FIBA AfroBasket 2021 qualifiers in November, FIBA has disclosed that the third and last window will be organised in a bubble, which is a protected environment to ensure health and safety of all participants.
The qualifiers will be played in Tunisia and Cameroun. Groups A, D and E, made up of 12 teams will battle for the AfroBasketball ticket in Monastir, while Groups B and C will fight in Yaoundé from February 19 to 21.
According to the organisers, Nigeria will face South Sudan, Mali and Rwanda in Group D, as D’Tigers remain unbeaten after dominating the second round in Rwanda in November 2020.
FIBA declared that the national teams that finish in the first three places of each group will qualify for the 30th edition of Africa’s prestigious basketball championship, holding in the Rwandan capital of Kigali from August 24 to September 5, 2021.
The vice president of NBBF, Babs Ogunade, told The Guardian at the weekend that the federation was working round the clock to ensure D’ Tigers had good outing in Tunisia.
“D’Tigers will be camping in Tunisia for one week before the commencement of the African championship. Our players are busy with club engagements at this point, but the body is putting every logistics in place to make sure the players arrive Tunisia early for the qualifiers.”
Meanwhile, the NBBF is in talks with sponsors of the domestic leagues in its quest to commence the 2021 league season soon.NBBF declared that with the domestic calendars already drawn, the federation is in talks with its long term women league partner, Zenith Bank, as well as Total Nigeria, who recently agreed to sponsor the Divisions One and Two men’s leagues.
The president of NBBF, Musa Kida, said: “We are in contact with our stakeholders. We wrote the clubs in November telling them that if things went well, we should hit the ground running. We have spoken to Total Nigeria who are the sponsors of the Men’s Division One and Two leagues, which is our big signpost for grassroots development. We are in a deep discussion with Women league sponsors, Zenith Bank.”
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