Afrobasket 2011: Emmanuel, Abimbola Rate D'Tigers High

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As the senior national basketball team of Nigeria, D’Tigers, continue to seek for glory at the on going Africa Cup of Nations, the Afrobasket 2011, in Madagascar, pundits of the game back home have rated the team high.

Speaking with P.M Sports yesterday on the brilliant performance of coach Ayo Bakare-led team at the competition, veteran broadcaster Shina Abimbola said he sees the team making it all the way to the final.

“We have a bunch of talented players out there that are hungry to do the country proud.They have been impressive in the games they have played so far. I don’t envisage any difficulties on their way to the final because they are one of the favourites to win the championship.

“With a bit of luck and continued dedication from the players, I will not be surprised if we go all the way to the final and win the trophy,” he said.

Also reflecting on the performances of Nigeria so far in Madagascar was Onyekachi Emmanuel, a member of home- based D’Tigers.

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Emmanuel said with the experience of the players in the team, he expects Nigeria to at least get to the final of the biennial competition, adding that like Angola, D’Tigers can boast of world class players at the tourney.

“Right from the moment the team left the shores of this country I believe they would do wonders in Madagascar because they are hungry for glory.

“These are players that want to write the name of the country in gold and the coaching crew are equally poised for greatness with the team.

“Other things equal, the only country that could pose a serious threat to D’Tigers’ ambition is Angola and the players are battle ready to break the jinx of losing to the perenial champions,” he stated.

—Bamidele Olowosagba