07 March, 2017
27 August
9 Joyce EKWOROMADU (Nigeria)
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FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2017 Power Rankings: Nigeria, the biggest climbers of week 2

ABIDJAN (FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2017) - Every week leading up to FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2017 taking place from August 18-27 our editors will be ranking the 12 national teams bound for Bamako, Mali, based on their respective rosters and preparations for the Championship.






Four weeks since the start of Mali preparations, which included warm-up games against local teams, and Djene Diawara, Naignouma Coulibaly and Astan Dabo emerge as the team's inspirational leaders.   


The Senegalese are taking their title defense very seriously. After holding a ten-day training camp in Paris, they are set to face the Netherlands and Germany in a three-team tournament in Amsterdam from August 3-6.


The appointment of Sam Vincent as head coach of Nigeria as well as the start of training camps in Orlando - with USA-based players - and Lagos, gives us a clearer idea of what this Nigeria might look like in Bamako. As expected, Nigeria won't be short on talent and experience. With a team that has kept most players from last two international events, this Nigeria team has made a statement of their FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2017 intentions.


  The Congolese continue their preparations in Kinshasa where they beat local side AS Vita Club 52-39. They are expected to play a four-team tournament in Luanda against hosts Angola, Cape Verde and a local team. 

  Currently, under the tutelage of former international Deolinda Ngulela, Mozambique's preparations will receive a major boost when head coach Nasir Sale joins the team this weekend. Sale has increased his credentials as one of the best local coaches after leading Ferroviario da Beira to the title of the 2017 Mozambique (men's) League on Tuesday night.


As we write, the former African champions Angola are holding a training camp in Sao Paulo, Brazil. On Tuesday night, they lost (63-57) the first of their two games against Brazil. Both Ngiendula Filipe and Italee Lucas proved crucial. The first impressions are that they are still building on the team's chemistry. 


Egypt head coach Amr Ashour is determined to keep the tradition of giving young players a chance. He has recently added half of the U19 team for the training camp.



The Guineans look determined to make good things happen to their basketball. After competing at FIBA Women's AfroBasket 2015 with only nine players, coach Ousmane Sylla's team is currently working with twenty players including Alix Keita and Fanta Soumah.



The reason why Cameroon dropped a place from last week's rankings is simply because it remains to be confirmed who will coach the team in Bamako. Details about the team's preparations remain limited. 



The Tunisians are set to resume their training camp this week, after taking part in last week's 2017 Francophone Games in Cote d'Ivoire. 




The Central Africans have announced plans to start their preparations with a 19-player preliminary squad. Most of the team faced the DR Congo during FIBA Africa Zone 4 qualifier last June.




Cote d'Ivoire hosted the 2017 Francophone Games last week in Abidjan. Although it featured a U-25 team, most of whom could represent the country in Bamako. And losing 54-46 to a U25 Senegal team in the Quarter-Finals left home fans wondering about the team's competitiveness.   

*The power rankings are entirely subjective and is in no way a true, accurate ranking systems. All comments are purely those of the author