D’Tigress Head Coach, Otis Hughley, is confident that his team has chances of successfully defending their FIBA AFROBASKET title when the competition gets underway on August 9, 2019.
Following the team’s draw against Tunisia and Cameroon at the official draw ceremony held in Dakar, Senegal, Otis said the team can mount a strong title defence with the talents at his disposal.
Having led the team to a historic eighth place finish at the 2018 World Cup in Spain, Otis is aware of the buzz already created around D’Tigress, ranked number 2 in Africa.
The team will hope to bury the ghost of their 2015 misadventure where they narrowly lost to host Cameroon 70-71 in the semifinal under Coach Scott Nnaji.
Otis said: “I know Cameroon has a good history against us.
“They beat Nigeria in the 2015 semis.
“At this level, anybody can be beaten any day, so we are taking all the teams as the same.
“No matter who they are, we are going to play them hard and tough.”
Despite exuding confidence about their chances at the AFROBASKET holding in Dakar, Senegal, Otis cautioned that winning the title for the fourth time will not come cheap.
He said: “It is a round ball, no matter what, it is still going to bounce.
“We are still going to worry about health and how the chemistry is going to pan out this year because we have not had a lot of time to train together.”
The reigning African Champions went eight games unbeaten to clinch the 2017 title in Bamako, Mali, defeating Senegal, 65-48 points to win the title.
Nigeria (Defending Champions), Senegal (host), Mali and Angola have been tipped as favourites by bookmakers.