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South Africa set to host Basketball Without Borders camp

South Africa set to host Basketball Without Borders camp

THE National Basketball Association (NBA) and the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) have settled on South Africa as the host of this year’s Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Africa edition event. The meet, in its 20th edition this year, will be held at the American International School of Johannesburg from Saturday 3rd to Tuesday 6th August 2024, marking the 16th time that the NBA and FIBA’s global basketball development and community outreach program will be held in South Africa. According to NBA Africa CEO Clare Akamanzi BWB Africa, this year’s edition will bring together 30 boys and 30 girls from more than…
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South Sudan’s fairytale basketball story shows what’s possible

South Sudan’s fairytale basketball story shows what’s possible

SILALEI SHANI, BIRD STORY AGENCY WHEN the first round of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 Africa qualifiers came to a close on July 3, with games played in Egypt, Cote D’Ivoire, and Rwanda, 12 teams had secured spots in the second round of qualifiers commencing at the end of August in a 2 group format, with Cote D’Ivoire, Angola, Guinea, Cape Verde, Nigeria and Uganda in one and South Sudan, Tunisia, Cameroon, Egypt, DR Congo and Senegal in the other. This sets up some tough matches in the next round but there are already some significant stories here. Africa’s…
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The emergence of Nigerian Basketball as a global powerhouse

The emergence of Nigerian Basketball as a global powerhouse

BOITUMELO RANTAO “WHO doesn’t want to go to the Olympics? “asks Nigeria’s star and power forward Evelyn Akhator. The common answer rolls effortlessly off the tongue for most but means so much more to an athlete looking to achieve their life’s goal. Nothing less could be said of the Nigerian Women’s basketball team. A positive atmosphere radiates around the team searching for their second Olympic bid in Tokyo.  The team’s first Olympic experience came in Athens in 2004 finishing in 11th. After missing the last three Olympics games, they are looking to make an impact following back-to-back triumphs in the…
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From bombs, bullets to hoops

From bombs, bullets to hoops

BOITUMELO RANTAO THE odds of survival in a country devastated by civil war are slim. The odds of making it overseas, away from a civil war, are even slimmer. The odds of making it into the best basketball league in the world as a native of South Sudan? Near impossible.  But defying the odds is what turns good teams into great ones. That is the inspirational story of Manute Bol, who survived the bombs and bullets of a war in South Sudan and made it into the US National Basketball Association (NBA), the biggest and richest league in the sport.…
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Meet Africa’s Mr Basketball

Meet Africa’s Mr Basketball

BOITUMELO RANTAO FOR the majority of basketball players in Africa, their only hope of creating a career out of basketball is to seek a change of scenery and travel overseas. For others, basketball can be used to better the current situation by seizing opportunities to better schools that might have not been available before.  Football was known as the clear-cut favourite as Senegal’s No.1 sport, but the growing presence of basketball could not be ignored. Though hard to find the facilities, and at a time when courts were not readily available.  One youngster had just received a basketball from his…
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FIBA and Botswana announce partnership

FIBA and Botswana announce partnership

BOITUMELO RANTAO  THE resurgence of Botswana basketball has begun.  The Botswana Basketball Association (BBA) has announced a partnership with the International Basketball Federation (FIBA). The FIBA PLUS Strategy and Planning Program aims to “Empower National Federations” by organizing, professionalizing, and commercializing the Associations basketball activities. After taking steps to understand the current details of BBA’s organization FIBA will assist in developing and implementing strategies for basketball development in Botswana. The initiative will assist in advancing federation growth and progression through sustainable strategic goals. "The Botswana Basketball Association is delighted and honored to have been selected to benefit from the FIBA…
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South Sudan women’s basketball team – stars on the rise

South Sudan women’s basketball team – stars on the rise

BOITUMELO RANTAO  SOUTH Sudan is still on a high after their senior men’s team qualified for their maiden African Basketball championship (AfroBasket) tournament, and the prospects of the women’s team replicating the same feat are looking greater and greater.  President of the South Sudan basketball federation, and former National Basketball Association (NBA) All-star, Luol Deng has helped provide the world a glimpse of what South Sudan as a basketball nation is capable of.  Deng saw his senior men’s team qualify for the International Basketball Association (FIBA) AfroBasket tournament, scheduled for late-August 2021 in Rwanda, in their first time of asking.…
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South Sudan soar to unchartered territory

South Sudan soar to unchartered territory

BOITUMELO RANTAO  THE newest face on the African basketball court debuted at the Federation International Basketball (FIBA) Afrobasket preliminary tournament in Kigali, Rwanda and have become the biggest movers on the FIBA Top 100 World rankings.  South Sudan found themselves in group D, alongside Nigeria, the number one senior men’s team in Africa, and two formidable foes in Rwanda and Mali. These fixtures painted a steep hill to climb for the nation appearing in their first Federation International Basketball (FIBA) Afrobasket preliminary tournament.  After a tough opening game going down 56-76 to Nigeria, the South Sudanese regrouped to register back…
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Egypt and Mali claim U18 AfroBasket Honours

Egypt and Mali claim U18 AfroBasket Honours

BOITUMELO RANTAO MALI’S U18 men’s national team won their second straight Federation International Basketball (FIBA) U18 African championship title after edging Senegal 82 - 80 in their finals matchup in Cairo, Egypt. https://twitter.com/FIBA/status/1336772508159270913 The young Malian team were defeated by their Senegalese adversaries earlier in the week, but rose up to take the title with a last minute dynamic style. Both teams have booked their place in the 2021 U19 World Cup. Mali were helped by their young star Bourama Coulibaly, who was named tournament MVP, for his standout performances throughout the week.  https://twitter.com/EBBFED/status/1336791753505050627 The Women’s championship ran concurrently with…
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Basketball star denied Olympic bid

Basketball star denied Olympic bid

Former Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) Most Valuable Player Nneka Ogwumike was denied an opportunity to represent Nigeria at the upcoming 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Ogwumike, who has been involved with United States of America (USA) basketball since high school, has been a longtime member within the US Senior basketball system. Having won gold with the American team previously, at the FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup in 2014 and again in 2018, it was a shock that Ogwumike was left off the US team list. Unfortunately, this is not the first time Ogwumike has been missing for the roster list prior…
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