3 Ater James Majok (LBN)
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New signings dominate Basketball Africa League teams' latest moves

ABIDJAN - In just over a month, African basketball will get to know a new chapter in its basketball history with the start of the highly-anticipated Basketball Africa League (BAL) in Kigali, Rwanda.

The first edition of BAL will run from May 16 to 30 at Kigali Arena.

Originally scheduled to debut its regular season last year, the FIBA-NBA competition, an initiative bored from the foundations of the FIBA Africa Champions Cup, was halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The twelve-team BAL will see teams coming from all corners of Africa. 

From the Indian Ocean island-country of Madagascar to the northernmost point of Africa in Tunisia, the BAL has arrived to stay in Africa.

The inaugural BAL's announcement was made in style by the competition's president Amadou Gallo Fallo.


So, what have teams been up with just four weeks for the inaugural BAL?

While some teams are yet to officialise their coaching staff, it's been a busy few days/weeks for BAL teams, but it's the new signings that have dominated BAL teams' activities recently.

Self-proclaimed BAL title contenders US Monastir signed not one but Lebanese internationals.

Over the past few weeks, the Tunisian champions added South Sudan-born Lebanon international Ater Majok, a 2,10m (6ft 11in) center, to a squad that includes seven Tunisian internationals.

Along with Majok (main photo), the Monnastarienne side signed Lebanese point guard Wael Arajki, who most recently contributed 19 points and 3.3 assists in four FIBA Asia Cup Qualifiers. 

In west part of Africa,  Nigerian side Rivers Hoopers signed former NBA player and 2016 Olympian Ben Uzoh.


And their Cameroonian neighbours of FAP hired head coach Lazare Adie Ngono, who most recently coached his country in the second window of the FIBA AfroBasket Qualifiers in Yaounde. 

Ngono, whose tenure with Angolan side Petro de Luanda ended last year, isn't knew to continental club competitions.

After leading Moroccan side AS Sale to the Third-Place of the 2011 FIBA Africa Champions Cup, Ngono's Petro finished runners-up the following year in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea.

It wasn't until 2015 that Ngono won his major continental trophy after leading Petro de Luanda to the title of the Africa Champions Cup.

Meanwhile, Egyptian side Zamalek not only signed Spaniard Agusti Julbi as their head coach, but also point guard Walter Hodge described as "all-round" type of player.