Coach of Nigeria’s senior male basketball team at the 2013 Afrobasket holding in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, has told his players not to underrate the Central Africa Republic but step up their game in Tuesday’s second round must win match to keep their ambition of lifting the trophy alive.
He gave them Monday as rest day but the Team Doctor, Suleiman Ohida and Physiotherapist, Ekundayo Ogunkunle worked on the players who confessed that the Cameroon match-up stretched them to the limit as they gave Al-Farouk Aminu thumbs up for his sterling performance in the crucial game.
Coach Bakare congratulated the players for making a statement to other teams in the competition by beating a highly rated Cameroonian team, adding that “you played yourself into the easier part to the semi final as you will now avoid Angola and Cote d’Ivoire.”
“I am personally proud of you for putting up a star performance and winning a day off for yourselves. You can savour this moment for now but ensure that you raise your game because any team that loses now goes home,” he told them at the locker room.
Meanwhile Sports Minister and Chairman of the National Sports Commission, NSC, Malam Bolaji Abdullahi and President of the Nigeria Basketball Federation, NBBF, Tijjani Umar have both congratulated the players for the victory.
“The minister called to congratulate the players yesterday after the victory and promised to be in Abidjan to boost their morale as they progress in the competition. I am equally happy that despite the injury worries, the players are doing well. They have shown commitment and determination to succeed and I hope they will continue in that spirit,” Umar said on telephone yesterday.