Nigeria’s men and women 3×3 national basketball teams will depart Abuja today to Kampala, Uganda for the 2019 FIBA Africa Cup, after two and half months of training at the basketball hall of Moshood Abiola National Stadium, Abuja.
The Nigeria’s men team will be hoping to regain the title they won in 2017, having lost the crown to Cote d’Ivoire in Lome, Togo last year, while their women counterpart would seek to better their record in the continental event.
Speaking to newsmen after their last training, the head coach of the team, Chris Acha, said that the teams are ready to do Nigeria proud at the annual championship slated for November 8-10, 2019.
“We have been training for more than two months now and we are good to go. We are going there to win and not just to participate,” Coach boosted.
Nigeria’s men team will play in group D of the tournament against host Uganda and Mauritius, while the women will trade-tackle Kenya and host Uganda in their group, but Coach Acha insisted that his teams are not scare of any opponent.
“We don’t care about the team we will play, either they are the host or not. Our plan and focus are to win all matches and come home with the trophy”.
“I took my time to call all the players I have in the camp because I believe they can do Nigeria proud and l have high hope that Nigeria will emerge victorious in Uganda. We won the tournament in 2017 and silver medal last year. We have learnt from last year’s mistake and that will not
repeat itself this time around.”
The coordinator of the team and chairman of FCT basketball association, Frank Jutiboh, said that the teams do not lack anything and are well motivated to do Nigeria proud.
“The teams have been in camp for close to two and half months and they are ready to go. They have trained very hard both morning and evening, working on their
conditioning, strategies, tactics, defense, attack and so on, and we pray everything works in our favour”.
“Judging from our past experience at international competitions, we know what the players and coaches need when going
for this kind of competition and I can tell you confidently that we have made adequate arrangements for them so that they
don’t have need to complain for anything”.
The event is expected to attract a record of 192 players with 12 teams at open category (men and women) and 12 teams of U-18 (men and women) from all over Africa
The men’s team of Cote d’Ivoire and the women’s side of Mali are the defending champions after winning in the second edition of the FIBA 3×3 Africa Cup in Lome, Togo last year.