Basketball: Nigeria’s D’Tigers defeat China, qualify for 2020 Olympics

Nigerian men’s basketball team, D’Tigers, [PHOTO CREDIT: Official Twitter account of D'Tigers]
Nigerian men’s basketball team, D’Tigers, [PHOTO CREDIT: Official Twitter account of D'Tigers]

The Nigeria national men’s basketball team, D’Tigers have qualified for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.

The team secured their automatic ticket to the Olympics after they beat China 86-73 on Sunday afternoon at the ongoing FIBA World Cup.

China are the host of the FIBA World Cup and needed a victory to pick the qualifying ticket for Asia.

However, it was D’Tigers that prevailed as they romped to a decisive 86-73 victory over their opponents.

It was not an easy one for the Nigerians as they battled against the hosts and had to fight back after being 21-19 down in the first quarter.

They fought back to win the three other quarters 16-10, 25-20 and 26-22 to get an aggregate 86-73 win.

Going into Sunday’s games, Nigeria and Tunisia were the two teams left in the race for the sole ticket for Africa with one match to go.

Enjoying a superior point difference, Nigeria has held on to the top spot ahead of Tunisia while the 2017 Afrobasket winner, Tunisia, are on the second spot with inferior points difference.

But the win against China ensured D’Tigers’ return to Asia in the summer of 2020 for the Olympics while Tunisia who also narrowly edged Iran on Sunday will have to go through to the qualifiers to secure a possible berth in Tokyo next year.

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