By Albert Akota
The Nigeria Basketball Federation leadership has showered encomium on First Bank Basketball Club following their bronze medal winning feat at the just concluded FIBA Africa Women Club championship held in Luanda, Angola.
In a congratulatory message, the NBBF President Engr. Musa praised the team led by Coach Peter Ahmedu for defeating Inter Clube of Angola by 70points to 61 in the third place game on Sunday.
Engineer Kida applauded their “never say die spirit” to bounce back in time from their semi final loss to Clube Desportivo 1º de Agosto 64 to 44points.
“I commend their efforts to make a name for themselves. Though we were rooting for them to make it to the finals and possibly win the title, but to win the bronze medal out of all the 9 teams that participated is not bad at all.”
Cecilia Okoye’s explosive display with 21 points made, 11 rebounds caught, 1 assist and 4 steals gave the Nigerian side the edge over their rival who had another member of the gold medal winning team, Ndidi Madu on their books.
Dominique Wilson also played her part well to hand First Bank their 2nd consecutive bronze medal at the continental level with 17 points and 4 rebounds.
Kida promised that the federation will continue to provide an enabling environment for players to thrive and be the best they can be whether at home or abroad.
“The First Bank team that came third had Chioma Udeaja, Nkechi Akashili, Cecilia Okoye and Tina Odion who were members of the gold medal winning team at the FIBA Africa women championship in Mali.
“Nkechi and Nkem Akaraiwe were also in Lome, Togo for the inaugural FIBA Africa 3×3 cup of nations where they won the silver medal. By the time they went for this tournament, they were already in the best frame of mind and completely ready to play at such stage.”
He said that the federation under his leadership will continue to do its best to expose Nigerian players to international competitions and host as many competitions as possible.