*We are ready for negotiation with Kida’s NBBF
Factional president of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), Tijjani Umar, has sent a congratulatory message to the officials and players of the national senior women’s basketball team, D’Tigress, for winning the Afrobasket Championship title for the third time at the weekend after earlier victories in 2003 and 2005.
Umar, expressed his delight at the commitment and dedication of the Aisha Muhammed-captained team at the championship, as they recorded 100% performance winning all the games played in style.
D’Tigress defeated their Senegalese counterparts 65-48 points to beat them a second time in the championship. And with the victory the team has qualified for the 2018 FIBA Women Championship in Spain.
They had earlier in the semi-final defeated hosts, Mali 48-47 to set up the final against Senegal which they had earlier beaten 58-54 points in the group stage of the tournament.
He noted that the girls showed that they were true patriots who will not let any leadership wrangling derail their desire to win laurels for the country.
“The determination showed by the players and officials of the D’Tigress at the Afrobasket championship in Mali, tells a lot about the character of the team. They have just set precedence for other national teams in other sports in Nigeria, to remain focused even in midst of political instability in any of the sports federations.
Athletes should at all times not get themselves involved with leadership tussle by sports administrators. With an enabling environment, they should get the job done.”
Umar, who reiterated his readiness to engage the Musa Kida group in a final reconciliation as specified by the FIBA World at least at the end of November 2017, urged the men’s national basketball team, D’Tigers, to take a cue from the performances of the women’s team to go all the way to Tunisia and win the Afrobasket Men’s Championship, especially as they would be playing as defending champions.
Victorious D’Tigress arrived the Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos on Monday after a successful 2017 Women Afrobasket campaign in Mali.
The contingen arrived Lagos aboard Air Cote d’Ivoire after departing Bamako, Mali on the 28th August at 14.00 hours local time.
The team was without Coach Sam Vincent, Mfon Udoka, Evelyn Akhator and Nyingifa Atonye who have all left from Bamako to their various bases due to club and personal engagements.
Akhator who was selected as one of the competition’s best five left for Chicago to play for her club Dallas Wings in a WNBA game while Nyingifa will join her club in San Juan, Puerto Rico.