Almost three years have passed since his last act as head coach of Senegal, and Spaniard Porfirio Fisac is back to the helm of the ‘Teranga Lions’.
Fisac, who led Senegal to the Third-Place at FIBA AfroBasket 2017, will be assisted by former Senegalese international Boniface Ndong, the country’s basketball federation (FSBB) announced Tuesday.
The appointment is part of a reshuffle carried out by FSBB. Fisac takes over from FSBB new Technical Director Moustapha Gaye, who will also serve as head coach of Senegal women’s team, replacing Cheikh Sarr.
Fisac returns to Senegal five months ahead of the Belgrade Olympic Qualifying Tournament (OQT), where they will play Italy and Puerto Rico in Group B.
An experienced coach with a proven track record in Spain’s ACB league, Fisac first coached Senegal at 2016 Manila OQT, where the Senegalese lost to Turkey and Canada before returning the following year for the African Championship co-hosted by Senegal and eventual champions Tunisia.
Fisac currently coaches Basket Zaragoza in Spain’s topflight league.
Since Fisac’s last tenure with Senegal in 2017, two other coaches have led the Teranga Lions, including Abdou Ndiaye, who led his country to a 10-2 mark in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 African Qualifiers, and Gaye, who saw Senegal finish 0-5 at last year’s World Cup in China.
During a press conference Gaye explained why he named Fisac. “Porfirio is a technician who knows the National Team well with his third place in [FIBA] AfroBasket in 2017.”
“He is doing a good job in Spain. He coaches the third best team in Spain behind Real Madrid and Barcelona. I said to myself why go look elsewhere when we have someone who knows the team and who continues to do very good things at very high level. So my choice fell on Porfirio.”
Meanwhile, Ndong, one of the most successful Senegalese players from the past two decades, has served the national team as manager at the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2014 in Spain.
Ndong, 42, has featured at three FIBA AfroBasket events, before retiring from his national team in 2011 in Madagascar.