D’Tigers head coach, Mike Brown has expressed optimism that his team will come back stronger from their 77-68 loss to Ivory Coast in their final Group C game at the ongoing Afrobasket at the ultramodern Kigali Arena in Rwanda.
Les Éléphants took the first quarter 20-11 but the second quarter belonged to D’Tigers, who outscored their opponents 23–19 to go into the half-time break 39-34. The Ivorians, however, turned on the screw in the third and fourth quarters, ensuring they held on for a famous 77-68 win over Nigeria.
Reacting to the loss, Brown, said his team didn’t play as good as they could have but is hopeful they would bounce back in their next game.
“We didn’t play hard or play together and that is a recipe for disaster against a good team. You have to give Ivory Coast credit. They were extremely physical and confident and they were together the entire game,” he told the media after the match.
“They played harder than us today (Sunday). They played smarter than us today and they got the win. In my opinion, the best team won the game. You have to give a lot of credit to Ivory Coast. They did a heck of a job.
“It will be interesting to see how our guys respond after the loss. We still have an opportunity to go again and we will see how that turns out in the next game.”
Ivory Coast, Senegal, Tunisia and Cape Verde are the four countries that booked an automatic ticket to the quarter-final stage.
D’Tigers will slug it out with Uganda, who finished third in Group D, winning one out of three games in the group.