D’Tigers suffer defeat in final FIBA World Cup qualifiers game against Senegal

Nigeria’s national male basketball team, D’Tigers, slipped to their second loss in three games with a 63-84 points defeat in the hands of Senegal on Sunday.
D’Tigers were playing their final FIBA World Cup qualifiers game, having already booked a ticket for the 2019 FIBA World Cup in the fifth window.
They first fell to a humiliating 46-72 points defeat to hosts Cote d’Ivoire on Friday.
They then raised their game to manage a 72-59 points win against the Central African Republic on Saturday.
The game against Senegal, played at the Palais Des Sports de Treichville in Abidjan, saw the Senegalese blow away the D’Tigers 27-19 points in the first quarter.
Nigeria narrowly took the second quarter with an unconvincing 15-13 points win, but Senegal further widened their lead with a 23-19 win in the third quarter.
The D’Tigers saved their most lacklustre performance for the final quarter, as they could only manage 10 points against Senegal’s 21.
As was the case in the defeat to Cote d’Ivoire, Ikenna Iregbu was Nigeria’s best performer.
He was directly responsible for 28 of the 63 points Nigeria scored, and also managed six rebounds and two assists.
Babacar Toure, with 20 points, 10 rebounds and two assists, was Senegal’s top performer.
D’Tigers’ defeat means they ended the FIBA qualifiers on 22 points, having won 10 and lost two games.
It also means that Senegal finished with the same points as the Nigerians, although the D’Tigers top Group F with a superior head-to-head record.
Nigeria, Angola, Senegal and Tunisia have now qualified for the FIBA World Cup, with the final African slot to be taken by either Cote d’Ivoire or Mali.