31st August, 2021
Nigeria’s D’Tigers on Tuesday ended their 2021 FIBA AfroBasket campaign on a sour note with a 68-80 loss to lowly-rated Uganda in Kigali, Rwanda.
The Nigerian senior men’s basketball team who were the competition’s champions in 2015 had qualified for this Qualification to Quarter-Finals fixture by finishing second from Group C.
But at the Kigali Arena on Tuesday against Uganda, who finished the group phase as Group D’s third-placed team, the Nigerian side simply failed to come to the party.
They lost 12-24 and 19-20 in the first two sets to trail by 13 points in the opening half.
After an 18-23 loss in the third quarter further worsened their situation to trail by 18 points, they fought back to win the fourth quarter 19-13.
This was, however, a little too late as Uganda went away with a 12-point lead to advance into the competition’s quarter-finals where they will face Cape Verde on Thursday.
Nigeria’s top performer in the game against Uganda was Uzodinma Utomi.
He scored 23 points, with three rebounds, two assists, one steal and two blocks.
Andrew Edogi also had seven rebounds, and Ikenna Ndugba six assists.
In other Qualification to Quarter-Finals fixtures played on Monday, Angola had beaten Egypt 70-62 to book a Wednesday quarter-final meeting with Senegal.
Also, Guinea beat hosts Rwanda 72-68 to advance to a quarter-final meeting with Cote d’Ivoire on Wednesday.
The last quarter-final fixture will hold on Thursday with Tunisia taking on the winners of the South Sudan versus Kenya fixture which was ongoing later on Tuesday.
The competition, which now holds every four years, will end on Sunday.