How D’tigress Demonstrated Grit And Power To Book World Cup Ticket
D’Tigress kept their global rise intact with a 2-1 result at the FIBA world cup qualifiers in Belgrade.
Despite the administrative uncertainties, the team sent a reminder for why they are the 3-peat champions of Africa
A win over Mali and France means D’Tigress are returning to the Basketball world cup.
Before the two victories by the African champions, the team lost to China in the first game.
D’tigress last played together in September at the 2021 Afrobasket final, where they defeated Mali and achieved a three-peat in Cameroon.
With Ezinne Kalu missing out on injury, and just one natural Point Guard, Promise Amukamara, coach Hughely had his work cut out.
The big question was who will play at PG when Promise needs to sub?
The roster consists of 7 forwards (power /small) and 3 Centers, then one PG meaning, they are a player short.
It became a head-scratcher as Adaora Elonu and Atonye Nyingifa stepped into the role.
D’Tigress: Qualification for the World Cup now looks within reach.
A slow start ended with a 17pts deficit at the end of the first quarter (11–28) against France.
The Afrobasket champions showed grit, outscoring France in the remaining quarters despite having just ten players fit on the roster from the available 11.
Surprisingly, Hughley made use of just 8 of the ten players leaving out Murjanatu Musa and Nkem Akaraiwe.
The African champions reduced their 20-point deficit to 11 at halftime (27–38) and never stopped.
With 6:37 left in the fourth quarter, Macaulay delivered back-to-back buckets to give D’tigress their first lead in the game 56, –54.
Victoria Macaulay’s monster game came to the fore at the last minute.
A steal, two free throws, and a three-point shot by Macaulay in the last minute of the game was enough for Nigeria to record an upset over world number five, France.
The game against Mali was going smooth until the fourth quarter.
The Malians crawled back a twenty-point deficit to within two but, they ran out of time.
A repeat of the 2021 Afrobasket final went the same way for D’tigress.