D’Tigress star player, Evelyn Akhator is confident Nigeria can win the 2017 FIBA Women Afrobasket, if the team remains focused as the tournament hots up in Mali. Nigeria will take on Guinea at 11.45am today.
Akhator who plays in the Women National Basketball Association (WNBA) with Dallas Wings stated that despite an impressive outing so far in the competition, the team have not fully reached their full potential. With an automatic ticket to the 2018 FIBA World Cup at stake, Akhator said the team are not getting ahead of themselves with two more group games to play.
“I think we are going to learn from our mistakes and get better. Every game is a learning experience for us. Against Egypt, we noticed we needed to take care of the ball more, we needed to reduce our turnovers and that was exactly what we did.” The influential player started her campaign against Mozambique with 13 points and six rebounds before hitting seven points and catching nine rebounds against DR Congo. On Sunday against Egypt she topped her performance with 24 points, five assists and 13 rebounds. Speaking after her effort ensured Nigeria became the first team to qualify for the quarter-finals, Akhator said, “I am just having fun.
One thing about basketball is that you just have to have fun to be at your best and that is what I have been doing.” Despite recording a double-double against Egypt, the number three pick in the 2017 WNBA draft is not carried away by her performances so far at the competition as she is fully focused on the games ahead. “I don’t care about the scores, we just play every opposition at a time and that is what I have been doing and I think it’s been working not just for me but also for the team.”