D’Tigers became the first team to qualify for the 2021 FIBA Afrobasket following a 75-70 win over South Sudan in Tunisia on Wednesday evening.
So far in the qualifying series, D’Tigers have been ruthless in their quest to book a ticket to Rwanda later in the year and had to overcome a late scare from the South Sudanese to maintain their perfect record.
The game began with South Sudan getting the first points through Kuany Ngor Kuany. But Ike Iroegbu, the MVP the last time both teams met responded for the D’Tigers.
From then on, it was a tightly-contested affair between the two teams but eventually, D’Tigers were able to pull away taking the first quarter 18-9.
The second quarter went South Sudan’s way winning it 21-20 and while D’Tigers struggled to take the third quarter 20-19, with the fourth quarter proving decisive.
The South Sudanese team finished stronger in the final quarter, almost securing an upset with their 22-18 fourth quarter win but it was not enough as D’Tigers finished overall winners with 75-70 points.
Ike Iroegbu was the MVP for the Nigeria team again; contributing 16 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Emegano contributed 15pts, 3 assists and 2 rebounds. Chima Moneke scored 8pts, while Amanze Egekeze had 5pts after leaving the game with a right knee injury.
On Thursday, Nigeria will play against the tournament host country, Rwanda.