28 August 2017
Nigeria’s Senior Women Basketball team, The D’tigress on Sunday emerged winners of the 2017 FIBA Women’s Afro Basket Championship hosted by Mali.
The D’tigress completed their impressive tournament run in the Finals on Sunday when they outclassed 11-time winners, Senegal by 65 – 48 to win their third Afrobasket Women Trophy.
The Nigerian Women kicked off the tournament with a 80 – 69 points win over Mozambique on August 18 and continued the form the next day when they edged out DR Congo by 84 – 47 points. D’tigress then outclassed Egypt 106 – 72 in their third game and the fine form continued with an impressive 106 – 33 points win over Guinea. Nigeria’s last group game was a hard-fought win over Senegal in a dramatic 58 – 54 points score-line.
The D’tigress beat West African neighbours, Ivory Coast in the quarter finals with 98 – 43 points before edging out host nation, Mali, at the semifinals by 48 – 47 points to book a place in Sunday’s finals and secure one of two Africa’s FIBA World Cup tickets.
The Senegalese saw off Cameroon in the quarter finals and defeated Mozambique in the semi finals to set up a final clash with Nigeria who last won the biennial tournament in 2005.
It was Nigeria’s third FIBA Women Afrobasket title and incidentally, they were led by Coach Sam Vincent to win all the three titles; 2003, 2005 and 2017.
Senegal’s Astou Traoré was named the Most Valuable player of the championship while Nigeria’s Evelyn Akhator made the All-Star Five of the tournament as the Point Guard.
Also joining Senegal’s Astou Traore as the Power Forward in the All-Star Five are Angola’s Italee Lucas as the Shooting Guard, Leia Dongue of Mozambique as the Small Forward and Mali’s Naignouma Coulibaly as the best rebounder.