August, 3 2023.
Defending Champions, D'Tigress of Nigeria on Wednesday night passed a litmus test, when beating their counterparts from Mozambique by 59-52 dunks, to qualify for the semifinals, of the 2023 FIFA Women's Afrobasket championship, now at its business end.
Nigeria trailed 16-18 after the first quarter and was 4 points adrift at halftime (29-33); but returned stronger in the third quarter to take it 18-10; before wrapping up the fourth set 12-9 to win the duel 59-52 and set up a semifinal clash against Rwanda tomorrow, at the BK Arena, in Kigali.
Host nation, Rwanda, which was the only team to top their group and qualified directly to the last eight, with a solitary win bundled the Gazelles of Uganda out of the tournament, with a 66-61 defeat. Uganda created the first major upset of the ongoing championship, by inflicting a 71-69 defeat on Senegal, the tournament's most successful side, on Day-1.
Rwanda won the first quarter 22-11; and led the tie by a single point [28-27] at halftime. But a resounding 24-10 points success in the 3rd period, proved to be too much as Uganda lost by 6 points, despite winning the final quarter 23-15.
Meanwhile, an out of sorts Senegal clinched an unlikely semifinal spot after upsetting Cameroun 80-77 with Jessica Dillard the coming from the bench to make the winning basket for Senegal who last won the Afrobasket title, in 2015.
Victory for Senegal in the clash of two Lionesses, who are both technically sound and physically endowed teams, was their second straight win in Rwanda, having lost to Uganda and Mali in the group phase, www.ckdmedia.ng reports.
Next for the Lionesses of Teranga is a clash for a place in the semifinals, against runners-up of the 2021 edition, Mali who put in a dominant display to trounce a very promising but less experienced Guinean side 96-40 in the first of the four quarterfinal match-ups, decided on Wednesday.