Rwanda’s Men’s National Basketball Team have increased their chances of qualifying for the 2023 FIBA Afro-CAN after defeating South Sudan 72-55 points on Monday, June 19, at the ongoing FIBA Afro-CAN Qualifiers in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
The game, which took place at the Benjamin Mkapa Indoor Court, was Rwanda’s second victory, following a 114-34 victory over Eritrea on June 18.
Dr. Cheikh Sarr made no changes to the lineup that started against Eritrea, with Kenny Gasana, Kendall Gray, Dieudonne Ndizeye, William Robeyns, and Osborn Shema starting against South Sudan.
Cheikh Sarr’s boys started the game on a high note, triumphing the first two quarters 15-14 and 22-9 to take a 37-23 lead into half-time.
South Sudan improved in the second half, but Rwandan players maintained their composure to win the third quarter by a score of 18-13 points.
Wilson Nshobozwabyosenumukiza made some incredible steals, but the South Sudanese heavily dominated the fourth quarter with 19-17 points, which was not enough to win the game.
After leading the team with a game-high 18 points against Eritrea, Ntore Habimana continued to put on outstanding performances, scoring 11 points along with Dick Rutatika, Steven Hagumintwari, and Dieudonne Ndizeye.
On the other side, Laundry Ndikumana, who is in electric form, helped the Burundi national team seal their third victory by scoring a game-high 22 points today against Eritrea.
Rwanda will return to action on Tuesday, June 20, taking on Tanzania at 6 pm in Kigali time, before facing Burundi the following day in what will be the national team’s final match.
The first-ranked team from the current qualifiers will be chosen to join the other teams competing in the 12-nation FIBA Afro-CAN finals, which will be held in Luanda, Angola, from July 8 to July 16.
The 2023 FIBA Afro-Can will be the competition’s second edition.
DR Congo is the reigning champions after winning the 2019 championship. The COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of the second tournament, which was scheduled to take place in 2021.
Afro-CAN is a basketball competition that promotes African players on a continental level. The competition allows national teams to field a roster with only two overseas-based players, with the remaining ten from the continent.