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U-18 Women’s African Basketball: Mali Maintains Supremacy

Mali claim their seventh FIBA U-18 Women’s African Championship title.

Mali’s U18 female basketball team continues to perform poorly on the global scene as they are yet to go beyond the 10th place ranking in their seven appearances made in the U-19 FIBA World Cup so far.

However, the Malians have maintained their supremacy on the African continent. Their dominance on the continent continued over the weekend after they claimed their seventh FIBA U-18 Women’s African Championship title.

Comprising six participating teams, the FIBA U-18 Women’s Championship is a component in the FIBA Africa zone. The event, started in 1996, is held bi-annually. The winners compete in the FIBA Under-19 World Championship for Women.

The Malians saw off hosts Mozambique 86-33 in Sunday’s Final held in Maputo. Assetou Sissoko and Sika Kone were the best duo in the match after bagging home a game-high of 25 points apiece, 11 and 17 rebounds respectively.

As for Sissoko, her top performance dates back to the opening day of the tournament when she netted 22 points in the 99-33 win over the Democratic Republic of Congo. She was crowned the Most Valuable Player of the tournament. Her 25 points in the final summed up her total points to 132 throughout the tournament.

“Since we came together, we made sure to act like a team. That means to win like a team. It would not have been possible to achieve this feat without each and everyone around,” FIBA quoted Sissoko.

Courtesy of qualifying for the Final, both Mali and Mozambique will represent Africa at the FIBA U19 Women’s Basketball World Cup 2019. In addition to the MVP trophy, Sissoko also clinched the best three-pointer award, with 42% of success, and the best scorer’s trophy, according to FIBA.

For Mozambique, they will be making their debut appearance at the global stage at next year’s U-19 world FIBA World Cup.

Sissoko headed the All-Star Five Awards offered by Tissot, where she was joined by Alexia Dizeko (Angola), Filipa Calisto (Mozambique), Aminata Sangare (Mali) and Bella Murekatete (Rwanda)

Final standings of the FIBA U-18 Women’s African Championship 2018:
1. Mali
2. Mozambique
3. Angola
4. Rwanda
5. Egypt
6. Cape Verde
7. DR Congo
8. Uganda

Image: FIBA

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