Nigeria’s senior men’s national basketball team, D’Tigers Wednesday night sealed qualification to the 2015 FIBA Africa Basketball championship in Tunisia and the All African Games in Congo with a 63-50 victory over Burkina Faso in the second leg of the qualifiers at the Indoor Sports Hall of the National Stadium in Lagos.
The D’Tigers, who won the first leg by 23 points in Ouagadougou, jumped off the starting block in style, in front of the ecstatic Lagos crowd with an 8 points lead in the first quarter with the score line at 18-10 points.
Though the D’Tigers missed a couple of free throws in the second quarter, the team extended its lead 32-17 to go on the half time break with a 15 points lead.
It was a tougher game for the host after the break as the visitors gave a tough fight in the second half winning both the third and fourth quarters 15-14 and 18-17 points respectively.
However, a relentless Nigerian side held on for the much needed victory to keep the 2016 Rio Olympics dream alive, which the 2015 Afrobasket will act as qualifiers.
Burkina Faso’s Moussa Ouattara led the floor on the night with 12 points and 11 rebounds in the losing effort with no Nigerian player recording double digits.
However, Azuoma Dike, Abdulwahab Yakubu and Abdulwahab Yahaya all finished with 9points apiece with Azuoma adding 6 rebounds to his tally. And Nigeria’s only home based player at the 2013 FIBA Africa Basketball Championship (Afrobasket) in Abidjan , Stanley Gumut giving a reminiscence performance that got him a national call up putting up 8 points, 6 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists and captain Olumide Oyedeji adding 6 points, 7 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists.