Everything you need to know about the #FIBAU16Africa 2019
PRAIA (Cape Verde) - The biennial FIBA U16 African Championship is back with a lot to look forward to.
In this article, FIBA Africa editorial team brings you everything you need to know about the FIBA U16 African Championship 2019.
A number of stars in the making will be at display in Praia over the next ten days.
Unlike the eight participating teams in the 2017 edition of the tournament, ten teams are confirmed for this year's U16 African Championships, including Algeria, Angola, Cape Verde, Cote d'Ivoire, Egypt, Guinea, Mali, Nigeria, Rwanda and Tunisia.
Winners of the 2013 edition, Angola return to the competition for the first time since 2015 while the 'Elephants' of Cote d'Ivoire make their first appearance in six years.
Egypt last won the tournament in 2015 in Mali
Ever since its inception in 2009, Egypt won three out of five editions, with Mali and Angola sharing one title apiece.
The teams will be divided into two groups of five. The teams that finish bottom of their groups will compete for the 9th to 10th place while the other eight teams advance to the Quarter-Finals.
When and Where will the tournament take place
Cape Verde emblematic Gymnasium Vava Duarte in the capital Praia is host venue where from Friday, July 5-14 the future of tomorrow's African Basketball will do battle for the right to be crowned champions of Africa.
Two years ago former France international Boris Diaw shared his experience and storied career with some future stars.
What's at stake
The winner and runners-up of the tournament will earn the right to represent Africa at next year's FIBA U17 Basketball World Cup.
After demolishing all their eight opponents two years ago to win their first-ever continental title, Mali are the team to beat.
How to watch
Hosts Cape Verde are making their debut in the tournament.
And addressing the local media, head coach Anderson Miranda admitted the uphill task he is set to face.
Yet, he remains adamant that Cape Verde will make the most of the opportunity.
"It’s our first participation in this type of competition. It’s also a huge responsibility, but the most important thing is that our youth will get an opportunity of learning a bit more about the international competition. They will be exposed to the international game, which is a great tool for their basketball aspirations," Miranda noted.
"Despite our lack of international experience we are not going there just to make up numbers. We’ll try to go as far as possible in the tournament, that’s our ambition. We are inviting school boys and girls - who are now enjoying their school holidays to come and support us."
Can Mali retain their title? Or will former champions Angola and Egypt make their presences felt?
Let the battle begin in Praia!