D’Tigress assistant captain, Evelyn Akhator has predicted Nigeria’s rise to the top 10 spot of world basketball.
Though, Nigeria is currently ranked 14 in the last FIBA World ranking from 42nd in the last three years and number one in Africa, Akhator, in an interview with Fiba.basketball.com, admitted that D’Tigress are hungry for more success. They want to take on the world and beat the best teams.
The last three years have been nothing but triumphant and prosperous for Nigeria winning back-to-back FIBA Women’s AfroBasket titles, competing at the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2018 and qualifying for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
It has been a show of talent, mental toughness and ultimately power so strong that they remain unbeaten in Africa since stepping on court against Mozambique in their Group B opener on August 18, 2017, at the continental competition in Bamako, Mali.
She insists that her team is not shying away from tough opponents and this is the thinking of her team mates.
“Much respect to Brittney Griner because she was the only person that came through for USA. She could not be stopped in that game even though we almost pulled it off, but we are one step closer to our goal,” Akhator explained USA’s late 76-71 win over Nigeria. Despite that painful loss, D’Tigress booked their slot at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and this will be Nigeria’s second time to play at the prestigious competition.
“Who doesn’t want to go to the Olympics? Hearing the word “Olympics” itself was a motivation for us to fight. We were not ready to wait another four years before earning another spot to qualify for the Olympics while the ticket was right in our faces so we had to do what we can to grab it.”