08 - 16
July 2023
49 Hamza Bechchar (MAR), 48 Youssef Tbitbi (MAR), 47 Ali Sakine (MAR), 30 Hamza Foulani (MAR), 22 Jihad Benchlikha (MAR), 21 Ayoub Achouri (MAR), 15 Soufiane Benhmine (MAR), 14 Soufiane Kourdou (MAR), 11 Ali Lahrichi (MAR), 10 Kevin Bruno Franceschi (MAR), 9 Mohamed Choua (MAR), 7 Abdelhakim Zouita (MAR)
Game Report
to read

Morocco win the 2023 FIBA AfroCan


LUANDA (Angola) - Morocco won the FIBA AfroCan 2023 Final after beating Cote d'Ivoire 78-76 in an evenly-matched encounter in Luanda, Angola. 

The win sees Morocco improve from their 2019 AfroCan campaign when they finished fourth in Bamako for the inaugural edition of the competition.

Playing a fast-moving game, the Moroccans built on their success from the moment they took the lead after the break.

It's Morocco's first continental trophy since winning the 1965 FIBA AfroBasket.

TURNING POINT: Although Cote d'Ivoire got off to the best possible start (25-22), Morocco put their ambitions to bed in the second quarter, with a severe 21-11 run to take the lead (43-36).

Another run at 14-13 allowed them to cement their lead, until Cote d'Ivoire's late awakening (27-21), which was certainly spectacular, but completely out of time as Morocco retained a two-point lead to claim the final victory.

STATS DON'T LIE: Morocco got their big men to play in the painted area to score 46 points, while seeing their bench score a whopping 38 points compared to just 24 for the Ivorian bench.

The Moroccans were also in total control, with no fewer than 46 rebounds, including 30 on defense alone, while Cote d'Ivoire could only muster 37 rebounds (18 offensive, 19 defensive).

HEROES: Mohamed Choua put on a stellar performance to help his team to victory. With 13 points, 15 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 blocks, the Moroccan earned his stripes as a general on the court.

At his side during the battle were Kevin Franceschi (14 points), Abdelhakim Zouita (11 points), Soufiane Kourdou (13 points) and Ali Lahrichi (12 points, 4 rebounds).

In addition, Lahrichi scored all 4 of his free throws to finish with a 100 percent success rate from the charity line.

BOTTOM LINE: Morocco came away with a narrow but realistic victory. We've never seen the Moroccans rush into the heat of the moment. They preferred to temper things and bounce back when things didn't go their way.

En route to the Final, Morocco finished second in Group C behind Tunisia, the only team they lost to.

Morocco then went on to defeat Cameroon, Kenya and the DR Congo before knocking out Cote d'Ivoire in the Final, finishing with a 5-1 record.

Morocco pulled off the perfect coup, arriving where they weren't necessarily expected. They end the 2023 AfroCan on a 5-1 run and will definitely be ones to watch in the years to come. 

THEY SAID : "We were tired from our season back home but we found our rhythm while playing the games. When we reached the Quarter-Finals, I told my players that we’re out to win the trophy and that we had no other choice than to bring back the trophy home." - Labib El Hamrani, Morocco coach.

"We had a very physical game against a tough opponent. The game was decided in the last seconds and we're more than proud to be the ones bringing home a continental trophy since the 1960’s. This one means a lot to us. Now that we've won, I hope we can evolve from here, and that the Federation will invest even more in us. Shoutout to our staff who have scored an A+ here in this tournament." - Kevin Franceschi, Moroccan guard and tournament MVP.

"We're sad. Everyone was waiting for us. We wanted to thank the Cote d'Ivoire population for having sent their support all the way to Angola. But we fell to a Moroccan team that controlled everything and were more complete. They have five players who finished with more than 10 points. So, it was extremely tough for us. Now, we’re going to concentrate on the upcoming World Cup, where I’m currently the assistant-coach." - Doh Kone, Cote d'Ivoire's coach.

"We don't really know when the game turned around. To be honest, I can't really figure out when it fell out of control. As from now, we need to keep getting better and better and next time, we'll be here to win.” - Mike Fofana, Cote d'Ivoire forward.