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Kalu headlines Tournament Five lineup at #AfroBasketWomen 2019
DAKAR (Senegal) - The FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2019 champions merited their success and two of their players along with a Finalist and one player from both Semi-Finalists.
Point guard Ezinne Kalu inspired Nigeria with 13 points, 3.2 assists, 3 steals and 2.6 rebounds per game giving her an efficiency of 12 per game and this individual brilliance earned her the Most Valuable Player Award and a place in the Tournament Five.
Kalu was incredible throughout the tournament
Kalu narrowly edged out her teammate Evelyn Akhator for the MVP Award as the centre, who played a crucial role in helping Nigeria's quest to defend their title, averaged 11 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game. Nevertheless, Akhator made it to the Tournament Five.
Akhator dominated the paint all tournament
Joining on the podium is Astou Traore of Senegal whose individual contribution to defining Senegal as a title favourite throughout the tournament meant that she fully deserved her place at the high table.
Traore, who is no stranger to the Tournament Five having featured at the 2017 edition when she was also named MVP, averaged 15.2 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.6 assists. Her individual
Traore was Senegal's best player at the tournament
Mali poster girl Touty Gandega renowned for her intensity on court was rewarded for her leadership by example but most importantly as the best point guard of the competition. She averaged 11.6 points, 3.2 assists and 2.2 rebounds per game as the Malians finished third for a third consecutive FIBA Women's AfroBasket.
Gandega led Mali from the front to bronze
Leia Dongue from Mozambique wowed the Senegalese crowd from the beginning of the tournament to the end and much to their satisfaction, she was applauded when her name was read out to complete the Tournament Five.
Dongue averaged 15.8 points and 7.2 rebounds per game for Mozambique.
Dongue was Mozambique's best performer by far
Her teammate Seda Tamara from Mozambique was the tournament's highest rebounder with 57 to her name while Angolan super star Italee Lucas was the highest three-point shooter with 12 of them.
Egypt's internet sensation Soraya Degheidy walked away as the highest points scorer with 85 as her side was handed the Fair Play Award.
Degheidy was central to Egypt's offence
This was the 26th edition of Africa's premier competition for women's basketball.