FIBA Women’s Asia Cup 2021 second-place team, China will begin their journey for another FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup appearance when they face FIBA AfroBasket Women champions, Nigeria, in the opening game of Group B Nigeria.
China lost to fierce rivals Japan in a game that ended 78-73 in the last game of the competition but today against Nigeria, they will be depending on Sijing Huang, Yueru Li and Xu Han all of whom showed enough brilliance at the Asia final.
Nigeria finished tops of the FIBA Women’s AfroBasket 2021 on a record three-straight wins of the continental title and will be on familiar terrain as they hit the court for their first win of the qualifying tournament.
Captain Adaora Elonu, who produced an MVP display, is set to lead Nigeria’s charge again alongside Ezinne Kalu and Victoria Macaulay.
Though, it is obvious that, unlike the last time the Nigerian girls were in Serbia, they had more time together as a team under Coach Otis Hughly, which is not the case this time around.
However, both sides will seek to have a win in this opening game as it will set the turn for subsequent games against France and Mali respectively.
Mali, which finished second place to Nigeria at the FIBA Women’s AfroBasket 2021 will face France in the second game of Group B. After two straight bronze medals, Mali improved and took silver as they made the Final for the first time since 2009, mainly off the back of a towering performance from center, Mariam Coulibaly.