D’TIGERS GOLD QUEST COMES TO AN END

Team Scotland Basketball Team yesterday ended Team Nigeria Basketball quest for Gold on the Gold Coast.
The Cinderellas defeated the D’Tigers by 61-66 in an exciting and terrific game. It was a disappointing result for the D’Tigers who were touted as favourites into the game.
The D’Tigers started the competition with a dismal performance against the Tall blacks of New Zealand at the Cairns Convention Centre. They lost the game by 65-110 points.
In the second game of the competition they lost to Canada by 67-82 points and host nation Australia defeated Nigeria in the last preliminary game by 55-97 points.
There was high hopes in the Nigerian camp of making it to the semifinals against the Cinderellas of Scotland in the qualifying round but the D’Tigers led by Ike Diogu could not match the Cinderellas and they lost the game with five points in a thrilling encounter that ended 61-66 points.
Team Cameroun Basketball started the competition on a winning note when they defeated India by 96-87 points but could not maintain the winning momentum as they lost the two games of the preliminary round to Scotland (52-63) and England (54-81).
In the Women’s game Team Mozambique Basketball lost to host Australia (53-113) in their opening game, they also were defeated by England (51-78) and Canada (53-85) in the preliminary round. They finally ended their quest for a medal on the Gold Coast when they lost (63-79) to New Zealand in the qualifying round.
The table below shows the results of the African Teams in the Basketball Event at Gold Coast 2018.

MIXED FORTUNE FOR AFRICAN TEAMS AT THE GOLD COAST COMMONWEALTH GAMES

PRELIMINARY AND QUALIFYING ROUND RESULTS

 

S/N TEAMS SCORE VENUE TIME CATEGORY DATE ROUND
1 CAMEROON VS INDIA 96-87 TOWNSVILLE ENT & CONV. CTR 11OOHRS GMT+1 MEN THU 5/4/18 PRELIMINARY
2 NIGERIA VS NEW ZEALAND 65-110 CAIRNS CONV. CTR 11OOHRS GMT+1 MEN FRI 6/6/18 PRELIMINARY
3 AUSTRALIA VS MOZAMBIQUE 113-53 TOWNSVILLE ENT & CONV. CTR 12OOHRS GMT+1 WOMEN FRI 6/6/18 PRELIMINARY
4 CANADA VS NIGERIA 82-67 CAIRNS CONV. CTR 0500HRS GMT+1 MEN SAT 7/4/18 PRELIMINARY
5 SCOTLAND VS CAMEROON 63-52 TOWNSVILLE ENT & CONV. CTR 11OOHRS GMT+1 MEN SAT 7/4/18 PRELIMINARY
6 MOZAMBIQUE VS ENGLAND 51-78 TOWNSVILLE ENT & CONV. CTR 0230HRS GMT+1 WOMEN SUN 8/4/18 PRELIMINARY
7 CAMEROON VS ENGLAND 54-81 TOWNSVILLE ENT & CONV. CTR 0500HRS GMT+1 MEN SUN 8/4/18 PRELIMINARY
8 CANADA VS MOZAMBIQUE 85-53 TOWNSVILLE ENT & CONV. CTR 11OOHRS GMT+1 WOMEN MON 9/4/18 PRELIMINARY
9 AUSTRALIA VS NIGERIA 97-55 CAIRNS CONV. CTR 1200HRS GMT+1 MEN MON 9/4/18 PRELIMINARY
10 MOZAMBIQUE VS NEW ZEALAND 63-79 TOWNSVILLE ENT & CONV. CTR 0930HRS GMT+1 WOMEN

TUE

10/4/18

QUALIFYING
11 NIGERIA VS SCOTLAND 61-66 CAIRNS CONV. CTR 1100HRS GMT+1 MEN

TUE

10/4/18

QUALIFYING

 

TEAM NIGERIA GO FOR GOLD IN GOLD COAST

The Nigeria Senior Men’s National basketball team D’Tigers departed Nigeria on Friday 23rd March 2018 for Gold Coast Australia for the XXI Commonwealth Games which will be held in Gold Coast, Australia from 4 April 2018 to 15 April 2018.
The team is made up of 6 home based and 6 foreign based players among which is Lagos City Stars Forward, Graham Olalekan Olatunji.
The team is coached by Alex Nwora who will be assisted by Abdulraham Mohammed and Aderemi Adewumi.
Other officials to Gold Coast include the Vice President of the Nigeria Basketball Federation, Mr. Babs Ogunade and Secretary of the Federation, Mr. Chimezie Asiegbu.
The team will play its 1st game in Group B against New Zealand on Friday 6th April, 2018. Other teams in the Group are Australia, Canada and New Zealand.

Nigerian Players include:
Ike Diogu (Henan, CHINA)
Uchenna Ireogbu (Stony Brooks, NCAA, USA)
Dung Eli Abraham- (Kano Pillars (NIGERIA)
Azuoma Dike – (Kano Pillars, NIGERIA)
Olantunji Olalekan Graham- (Unattached, USA)
Ofoegbu Uchechi Chima – (Unattached, USA)
Musa Usman (Mark Mentors, NIGERIA)
Abdulwahab Yakubu (Gombe Bulls, Nigeria)
Istifanus Sylvanus (Gombe Bulls, Nigeria)
Abdul Yahaya (Kano Pillars)
Achiuwa Godgift (Unattached, USA)
Orizu Prince Ifeanyi (Far Eastern University, PHILIPHINES)

SOMETHINHG TO BEHOLD AND CHERISH

It was a sight to behold and cherish when Notre Dame’s Arike Ogunbowale beat the buzzer with just a tenth of a second (0.1s) to go in the NCAA Women Division 1 Finals against Mississippi State.

Arike received an inbound pass with just three seconds to go, took two dribbles to the right and took an off-balance Three-Point jumper to give the Irish a 61-58 victory over Mississippi State.

The Nigerian born USA Basketball U-23 player also hit a deep Two-Point Jumper on Friday to defeat Connecticut by 91-89.

Arike Ogunbowale was born to Yolanda and Gregory Ogunbowale. She is the youngest of three children.

She is a Five-Time USA Basketball medalist with four gold and one silver. She recently led the USA U23 Squad to the Four Nations Tournament title with 3-0 sweep over Japan, Canada and Australia. She was also a member of the silver medal winning team at the 2015 FIBA 3X3 World Championship in Debrecen, Hungary. She led the tournament in scoring with 6.7ppg.

She is a graduate of Divine Savior Holy Angels High School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin with a career per-game statistical averages of 22.2 points, 9.6 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 2.2 steals with .544 field-goal percentage and .389 three-point percentage.  She holds the single-season school records for points, rebounds and fewest turnovers (12 in 2012-13)

Her first name “Arike” means something to behold and cherish.

 

Ugo Udezue gave up job as an NBA agent to form the African basketball league

Ugo Udezue was living the American basketball dream. The Lagos, Nigeria, native was an NBA agent for one of the most respected agencies, BDA Sports. The former Wyoming basketball big man’s clients included players Andre Roberson, Nenê and Festus Ezeli.

So why did Udezue give up being an agent to go back home? To give Africa its own NBA.

“This is the best thing I have ever done in my life,” Udezue said. “This is the best decision I ever made in my life. It’s surreal. Like a dream. If someone asked me four years ago if I was moving back to Africa, I would have said no. But I’m home. And most importantly for me, I’m building an industry that never existed before. We’ve created jobs. We’ve created opportunities in just over a year of being in existence.”

COURTESY OF UGO UDEZUE

Udezue started the African Basketball League with six teams in the spring of 2017 and rebranded it into the 10-team Continental Basketball League in six African countries. The CBL has teams in countries including Nigeria, Gabon, Equatorial Guinea, Ivory Coast, Benin and Togo. There are nine team owners, with one team, the Eko Kings, run by the league. The CBL is expected to announce that it will move its 2018 season to the fall with a 15-game campaign concluding with Final Four playoffs in November and December. The CBL has its own production company to show televised games in sub-Saharan Africa and is working on a broader cable deal, Udezue said.

The CBL is in its infancy, and there has been a lot of red tape for Udezue and the league to fight through. But with Udezue’s knowledge from working as an NBA agent and being around the NBA, the CEO of the CBL is hoping to grow it into a powerful league that not only develops players in Africa but also has African team owners and employees.

“The challenges were mostly political,” Udezue said. “People didn’t understand what we were trying to do. It was bucking the system. Sub-Saharan, just by heritage alone, we have the best basketball players. It’s in our DNA. With my experience in the game, I knew there was a lot of value in this region. But there was no professional basketball league because the precolonial system that has been in place didn’t make room for that when it comes to sports.

“A lot of bureaucrats felt threatened about the value we were trying to show, so they did everything they could to do something to stop it. I kept it alive with a lot of passion. We had a lot of people who were supporters who believed in the African dream and Africans creating something for Africans. We have a lot of support. Before our league, people didn’t pay to go to a basketball game here. But now, people pay a lot of money to come.”

Udezue played for the Nigerian junior national team in 1996. The son of Africans educated in the United States next came to America that same year on scholarship to go to school and play basketball at Riverdale Baptist School in Upper Marlboro, Maryland. The 6-foot-9 center landed a basketball scholarship to the University of Wyoming. Udezue averaged 20.5 points and 7.5 rebounds as a sophomore for the Cowboys during the 1998-99 season.

But after enduring microfracture knee surgery as a junior, Udezue redshirted and struggled his last two seasons. He graduated with a degree in communications from Wyoming with an emphasis on public relations and advertising.

COURTESY OF UGO UDEZUE

“The microfracture surgery basically ended my college basketball career,” Udezue said.

After Wyoming, Udezue played professionally in Sweden for a month but could not shake off his knee woes. He next began training kids from Africa in basketball in Washington, D.C. A mutual friend introduced him to NBA agent Bill Duffy, who at the time represented Yao Ming, Carmelo Anthony, Steve Nash and more NBA stars under his company BDA Sports.

With his eye on finding a basketball connection to Africa, Duffy hired Udezue to be an agent for BDA Sports in 2003. Besides Roberson, Nenê and Ezeli, Udezue represented players including Daniel Ochefu, Hasheem Thabeet, Ben Uzoh, Joakim Noah and Ike Diogu during his 14-year stint as an agent. Udezue said he remains close with his former clients, whom Duffy now represents.

“I liked the challenge, still being involved with basketball and mentoring players,” Udezue said. “I didn’t look at my clients as clients. I looked at them as brothers.”

It certainly would have been lucrative and comfortable to remain in the United States working for BDA Sports. But in the back of Udezue’s mind was the growing list of NBA players coming from Africa who were not developed. Udezue initially planned to go back to Africa to implement some basketball wisdom and come back to the States.

Udezue bought into a professional team in his hometown called the Lagos Islanders in 2015 and persuaded Uzoh to play. Udezue then decided that he should do much more, and the opportunity was there in Nigeria after seeing a “very, very poor” basketball system. He disliked seeing the Islanders’ opponents show up late to games or with bad uniforms. While Udezue considered coming back to America to return to his agent gig, he decided to start a new professional basketball league and moved to Lagos full time in October 2016.

“My heart and soul always told me that I needed to be part of something bigger,” Udezue said. “About four years ago, I woke up one day thinking about it. In [the NBA agent] industry, there are not many Africans in it. Of course, everyone wants to be a doctor. I felt like if anything happened to me today, it would be a damn shame if I never had a chance to give back my knowledge to my society and environment I was born in. It got me thinking that I had a higher calling with me being in the position that I am in. I had been implementing things to try to have the opportunity to come back to Africa.

“I had a choice: either start my own basketball league in Africa or come back to the United States. So I chose to start a basketball league.”

COURTESY OF UGO UDEZUE

Duffy understood Udezue’s decision to give up representing NBA players in order to realize his dream in Nigeria.

“This has been Ugo’s life mission from the moment he came on board with BDA,” Duffy said. “Fifty percent of his focus has been on this. We have supported it. He has done an unbelievable job. It’s his life passion. He is the right person with his experience and his energy to set up these opportunities.”

Said Udezue: “Bill Duffy has been very supportive.”

Duffy believed Udezue, with his NBA background, could build a sustainable and respectable professional basketball league in Africa. He recalled how his old client Yao built a bridge between China and the NBA.

“I have experienced this before,” Duffy said. “To see a whole culture, a whole commerce and ecosystem develop from scratch. All you had was a Chinese Basketball Association, and no one was present there. But he was the right vehicle to allow this to happen, so his stamp is all over basketball.

AFA Sports launches “LIV (54)”: The first active footwear designed in Nigeria.

Africa’s leading sports merchandise manufacturers AFA Sports launch Africa’s first Active footwear designed and engineered in Nigeria.

As inscribed on its soles, the active wear shoes were designed to showcase the pride of Africa. The name “LIV (54)” represents the 54 countries on the African continent.

“LIV (54)” is tailored and customized to the African physiology, kinetics and environment. It is lightweight and has the perfect combination of grip, comfort, durability & bounce.

Features of AFA Sports premier active wear shoes include:

· Contoured Traction Grip (CTG) technology with advanced arch support and rubber outsole borrowed from the multi movement patterns of the Sahara dessert.

· A micro mesh knit that gives the shoes comfort and breathability in warm climates.

· Multi gel areas for force deflections.

The AFA Sports 54’s can be worn to make a fashion statement or to elevate your basketball game.

Q & A ON AFA SPORTS

What does AFA Sport mean?

The name AFA Sports means “Africa for Africa” and represents a concept that highlights Africa’s sports development and National pride.

Why AFA Sports?

AFA sports was created as a sports merchandise brand for Africa to cater to grassroot sports that are neglected by the international brands who would rather not build from the ground up in an emerging market.

What does AFA Sport represent?

AFA Sports represents African sports and pride, it was established to showcase the pride & interest of the continent and this lays as the foundation of the brand. It was created to give the Nigerian & the African sports industry the attention and quality they deserve; by creating a range of products that have been adapted to the climate, kinetics and colors that are unique to African social context.

The brand is committed to developing grassroot sports in Africa, this is the same way international companies have obligations and priorities to where they were founded. Due to this AFA Sports have adopted the same model to close certain gaps within the African sports industry, gaps which big sports brands have failed to understand and bridge during their time in the African market.

What does AFA Sport mean for Africa?

In the past 2 years AFA Sports have steadily been designing concepts that are unique to Africa, also creating a whole new market and industry that was non-existent and small scaled. By capitalizing on this untapped market, there has been creation of jobs and opportunities for Africa and also major investments in media and content development.

The brand goal is to establish sports programs and encourage sports development in countries that are neglected and marginalized due to lack of investment. The goal is being achieved through several projects such as sponsoring the Nigerian Volley Ball Federation and the Benin Republic National Team. AFA sports is also currently working with the Liberian basketball federation to reinstate their program.

AFA Sports also promotes grassroots basketball through our AFA Sports academy program in partnership with CBL Next for children aged 6 to 17 years, this is due to our understanding that sports is an essential contributor to a positive society. Our kids are taught on the importance of team work, good sportsmanship and character development.

Why start with Nigerian National Team?

Starting with the Nigerian National team was never the plan, the focus was initially to target the Continental Basketball League and the grassroots. However an opportunity arose when the National team were left without a kit sponsor weeks before the 2017 Afrobasket tournament. The Nigerian Basketball Federation tasked AFA Sports to put together a package for the national team. The AFA Sports team engineered customized fabrics and designs to ensure the National team had suitable kits made of the best products to compete in the Afrobasket tournament.

What’s next for AFA Sports?

AFA Sports is extensively investing in indigenous innovative collaborations aimed at driving local content. The challenge with this is finding the right collaborators and talent that fits, this includes designers, developers and technical expertise.

In the summer of 2018 AFA Sports will be launching the biggest sports and athleisure Flagship store in Africa located in Victoria Island, Lagos. This will provide an opportunity for consumers to view an array of products and also physical connect and interact with the AFA brand.

D’TIGERS UNDEFEATED IN MALI

The Nigeria Senior Men’s National team, D’Tigers are sitting comfortably at the top of the table in Group B of the African Qualifiers for the FIBA 2019 World Cup.
The team went on a 3-0 run defeating Uganda by 102-86 on Day One.
On day two, the 2017 AfroBasket runners up put on their best performance by beating Rwanda with a score line of 108-53.
The D’Tigers on the last day battled with the host Mali in front of their home fans resulting in a 82-59 win for Nigeria.
The team was led by captain Ikechukwu Somtochukwu Diogu in minutes per game (27.6), points per game (17.7), Rebound Per Game (6.0) and total points made (53) in 3 games. Michael James Efevberha also contributed hugely to the D’Tigers unbeaten run with 26.3 PPG, and a total of 53 points in 26.3 minutes per game.

CBL STARS SHINE IN MALI


Players who featured at the 2017 May Madness Continental Basketball League tournament were in the spotlight during the 2019 FIBA World Cup African Qualifiers in Mali. Top on the list was Ikenna Bryant Mbamalu of the Lagos Warriors who played in all three games for Nigeria. He averaged 27.1 Minutes per Game with an average score of 11.3 and a total of 34 points. Thiery Bogmis of the Yaoundé Giants was also on point for Cameroun averaging 12.2 minutes per game, 5.7 points per game with a total of 17 points in 3 games. His counterparts Kevin Ngwese and Simon Bileg II were also on the Cameroonian team.

 

AFA Sports Basketball Academy

Continental Sports and Entertainment is proud to announce the launch of a basketball academy presented by AFA Sport. There will be two opportunities to participate on 24th February 2018 and 3rd March 2018. The trails will be in the upbeat centre located at 11, Admiralty Road, Off Admiralty Way, Lekki Phase 1, Lagos.
AFA sports basketball academy provide children age 6 to 17 a safe and fun environment in which to play basketball. This event is open to all children of any ability to come and experience a unique and fun basketball curriculum. Where you will have the opportunity to Play as well as learn the theory of basketball.
Basketball teaches children many life lessons including sportsmanship, teamwork, having a positive attitude and respect. At AFA sports basketball academy with the help of our coaches who have a clear philosophy of basketball with great communication skills will teach your children how to play Basketball the right way. .
AFA basketball academy has a comprehensive course that aims to give your child the foundation of basketball and a plan of development to bring the best basketball player in you. The basics are covered on offensive and defence through drills on Passing, Shoot, Dribble and defensive.


AFA basketball academy has the added benefit courses that that aim to teach the children how to be a leader on and off the court and how to gain a competitive edge in sports and life. Furthermore, AS part of the academy you will learn the importance of good diet and staying hydrated especially when participation in sports.
Sessions will run from 9 am to 3 pm on 24th February 2018 and 3rd March 2018 at the UPBEAT centre. All participants must submit a waiver signed by a parent or guardian before participating in their first session. Waivers are available at the program location and online.
If you are interested please contact AFA Sports Basketball Academy:
Phone Number: (+234)07062766629 / (01)6326275
Email: Info@CSE-company.com
Web: www.cse-company.com

sound sultan afa basketball academy

AFA SPORTS RELEASES NEW JERSEYS FOR D’TIGERS

Leading Sports Merchandise giant in Africa, AFA Sports, has released a new team jersey for the senior male Basketball Team, D’ Tigers. The team will definitely be looking splendid in their brand new kits officially released today, 22nd February 2018 in Lagos as they prepare to take off for Bamako, Mali for their 2019 FIBA Africa World Cup Qualifiers which will tip off this Friday 23rd February 2018.

The official apparel is custom designed in Nigeria with breathable micro mesh fabric for elite performance in Sub-Saharan Climate.

While reviewing the designs, the Co-owner of the Lagos City Stars, Sound Sultan said, “this is definitely a game changer for the Nigerian team because this unique fabric is adapted for the heat and keeps your body cool while playing”.

Watch D’Tigers bring the apparel to action in their quest to qualify for FIBA BASKETBALL WORLD CUP 2019.

Get the official apparel designed in Nigeria for Team Nigeria.

The official apparel can be pre-ordered and customized at all Sports World Shops nationwide.

For more information, visit www.afasports.com OR call 07062766629. Follow @afasports on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

NIGERIANS MAKE HISTORY IN THE NBA

Two Nigerian-born basketball players have made history in the NBA by being the first duo to do so. The two players featured in last weekend’s NBA-ALL STAR games which was played at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.

Two times All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo, 23, (Milwaukee Bucks), and First-Timer Victor Oladipo 25, (Indiana Pacers) both flew Nigeria’s flag high in LA, last weekend.

Giannis Antetokounmpo leads the Milwaukee Buck in scoring with 27.8 ppg while Victor Oladipo

Leads the Indiana Pacers in scoring with 24.4 ppg. The Pacers who are placed 5th in the Eastern Conference look good for a playoff spot and so are the Bucks who are trailing behind the Pacers in 6th place on the log.

Giannis Antetokounmpo started for Team Stephen and ended the game with 16pts, 7rbds and 2 assists in 27 minutes but his compatriot Victor Oladipo was among the reserves for Team Lebron. Antetokoumpo was born in the Olympic city of Athens, Greece to Charles and Veronica Antetokoumpo from Lagos, South West Nigeria.

Victor had 2 dunks to his credit but the more spectacular one was a reverse two-handed jam in the 3rd quarter after he had a steal off a pass to Stephen Curry. The Black Panther slam dunk contestant ended the game with 7pts, 2rbds and 3 assists in 15 minutes of play. Victor Oladipo was born to Joan Amanze Oladipo a nurse from Eastern Nigeria who migrated to the United States where she married Christopher Oladipo a native of Blama, Sierra Leone.

LAGOS WARRIORS GUARD, BRYANT MBAMALU MAKES IT TO MALI.

Bryant Mbamalu of the Lagos Warriors, one of the teams in the Continental Basketball League (CBL) Africa is enjoying a second coming with the Nigeria Senior Men Basketball team, D’Tigers. The team will be in Bamako, Mali from February 23-25 for the Group B 1st leg games in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 African Qualifiers.

The team is made up of the 5 top performers from the Silver winning team at the Afrobasket 2017 Championship, 2 from the Champions of Afrobasket 2015, and 11 others. The 18-man squad will take on host Mali, Uganda and Rwanda for a place in the second leg.