The Federation International Basketball Association (FIBA) has picked Nigeria to host other African basketball teams in the run-up to the Olympic Games in Paris in 2024.
The FIBA Pre-Olympics African Qualifier will take place from August 12 to August 20 at the Eko Hotel & Suites in Lagos, which will see Senegal, Mali, Uganda, the Congo Democratic Republic, Cameroon, Guinea, Tunisia and Nigeria competing for a prized position to represent the continent at the next Olympic Games.
The teams are split into two groups of four, with the top two teams from each group moving on to the semi-finals. A representative from Africa will be chosen from the winners of both semi-finals’ games.
The 9-day tourney will be broadcast live to an estimated 40 million viewers in more than 60 countries and is expected to attract more than 5,000 spectators. The tournament will also recognise icons who have contributed to the development of Basketball in Nigeria through the years including former players and administrators.
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D’Tigers is currently ranked first in Africa and has a good chance of being Africa’s representative in Paris 2024.
Coach Mike Brown, Head Coach of the Sacramento Kings and NBA Coach of the Year, will lead a team of 23 players, 18 of whom are currently playing in the NBA, the world’s most prestigious basketball league. Nigeria has some of the best players in the competition, including Gabe Vincent, Josh Okogie, Jordan Nwora, Precious Achiuwa, Ayo Dosunmu, Chuma Okeke and others.
Speaking prior to the competition, Dr. Engr. Ahmadu Musa Kida, President of the Nigerian Basketball Federation (NBBF), reaffirmed the NBBF’s commitment to a successful and trouble-free tournament with high expectations.
“The opportunity to host the African Olympics Qualifier is a testament to our past hosting endeavours and the confidence of FIBA Africa in the NBBF. We are proud to showcase our country Nigeria, the beauty of Lagos and the incredible talents of the D tigers to the world. We will continue to use our basketball to make Nigeria proud’’.
The 40 teams in the pre-qualifying tournament stage, five teams – one each from Asia, Africa, the Americas, and two from Europe – will qualify for the final Olympic qualifying tournament in 2024. The Olympic Games will hold in Paris, France from July 26 to August 11.