As Nigerians count down to the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, President of the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF), Musa Kida, is optimistic that the country’s senior men and women basketball teams can end up on the medals table.
Fielding questions from sportswriters at the weekend, the NBBF President said that Nigeria’s qualification to the Olympics “is not just to add to the numbers of participating teams but to shock the world and be amongst the best.”
With the current synergy and talents in the teams (D’Tigers and D’Tigress), Kida is not in any doubt that the two teams can compete with the best around the world and fly Nigeria’s flag high in Tokyo.
“D’Tigers and D’Tigresses are teams that have the true spirit of Nigerians in them which is the spirit to win and perform optimally. They are going to perform extremely well and may go ahead to shock the world again and this will be an excellent outing,” observed the Nigerian basketball federation chief .
Being the only Nigerian team sport to have so far qualified for the Games and the first time both teams will be featuring during the same summer Olympics (also first in Africa), expectations are high for the team to perform.
Ranked number one in Africa and 14th in the world, D’Tigress will be making a return to the games after their last outing in 2004 in Athens, Greece while the men ranked first in Africa and 23rd in the world are making their return after the Rio 2016 Games.
The NBBF president also recognizes this and said the federation with the help of the Federal Ministry of Youth and Sports will leave no stone unturned to prepare the team well for the Olympics.
“The prospects are brighter with the technical crew of D’Tigers that we have right now. The players we intend to invite include our players in the domestic league. We are going to have an array of a formidable team and we will shock the world.”
The 2020 Summer Games will hold from Friday, 24th of July to Sunday, 9th of August