Nigeria national Basketball team, D’Tigers’ head coach, Alex Nwora, has stated that preparations for the next 2019 FIBA World Cup African qualifiers in September will start in earnest.
Nwora led the his team to big wins over Rwanda and Uganda to qualify for the final round at the ongoing qualifiers in Lagos, Nigeria.
D’Tigers defeated Uganda 109-66 in their first game on Friday and also smashed Rwanda 111-70 on Saturday. They face Mali in their final game on Sunday.
“From our next game, we will start preparing for September. If we are going to face countries like Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique and Central Africa Republic who are also big names in African basketball, then we need to step up our game,” Nwora said after his side’s win on Saturday.
Nwora also revealed that their qualification will offer him opportunity to try out some new players.
“We have secured our win and we are so excited about this. We have a mixture of experienced and young but new players in this team.
“We will give the younger players more time on the court to see what they can do. I am really excited about the endless possibilities of the team going by their potentials”.
The win against Rwanda extended the team’s winning streak to 5 in all FIBA competitions.
Qualifiers from Group B will be drawn alongside those from Group D which includes Senegal, Cote d’Ivoire, Mozambique and Central Africa Republic for the 2 automatic tickets.
The first leg of the second round tournament will take place during the fourth window between September 10th to 18th before the return leg between 26th of November and 4th of December.
The FIBA World Cup world will take place in China from 31st August to 15th September, 2019.