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Afro Basketball Championship 2017

AfroBasket 2017: Tunisia Dethrones Former Champions

Tunisia won the 2017 African Basketball Championship after defeating former champions Nigeria 77-65 in Rades, Tunisia. Falling back by a six-point margin in the first quarter, the Tunisians bounced back and overturned the score by topping the second and third quarters, leading 17-10 and 27-16 respectively.

With 12 points separating both sides after three-quarters, the final quarter was the decider with both teams fighting for the title, but Tunisia led by its top scorer Zied Chennoufi (19 points), would not see the D’Tigers reclaim the title after both teams collected 25 points apiece in the final quarter.

It was the hope of Nigeria to win a back-to-back and join their female counterparts in celebrating a double title win, but the newly crowned champions came fully prepared after missing out in 2015 when they played host nation and finished in third place.

This would be the winner’s third Finals of the continental competition after edging out Morocco 60-52 in the semifinals, while Nigeria defeated co-host Senegal 76-71 in the semis. Senegal claimed the bronze medal of the biannual competition after beating Morocco 73-62 in the 3rd-Place.

During the closing stages of the competition, Nigeria’s US-based star Ike Diogu was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player after a dominant performance and was joined by compatriot Ikenna Iroegbu who was shortlisted with Mohamed Hadidane (Tunisia), Mourad El Mabrouk (Tunisia) and Gorgui Dieng(Senegal) for the All-Star Five Awards given by Tissot.



L to R: Gorgui Dieng (SEN), Mohamed Hadidane (Tunisia), Ikenna Iroegbu (NGR), Mourad El Mabrouk (TUN) and Ike Diogu (NGR). (FIBA.Basketball)


Diogu, 34, recorded a tournament-high 22 points per game and averaged 8.7 rebounds per game at the 16-team FIBA Africa competition. He was the tournament’s highest scorer with a total of 132 points.



Feature Photo: (FIBA.Basketball)

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