FIBA AfroBasket 2021 day 1 recap
The first day of FIBA AfroBasket 2021 is in the books, as the teams in groups A and B now have a foretaste of the competition with a game in their luggage.
The best moment of the day came in Group A when hosts Rwanda beat the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo) 84:68, behind the enthusiastic support of their fans, despite 28 ball losses.
The victory was possibly the most important in the history of the country.
William Robeyns led Rwanda with 23 points, three rebounds, two assists and four steals while shooting an efficient 8-of-14 out of the field and 5-of-9 from three points.
Kenny Gasana came close to a triple-double with 13 points, seven rebounds and nine assists and four steals.
Maxi Munanga Shamba led Congo DR with 22 points and seven assists.
In the first game of the day, the defending champion of AfroBasket 2017 Tunisia won a big win against Guinea, 82:46 in Group B.
Former NBA big man Salah Mejri led Tunisia with 17 points and four blocks, while naturalized players Michael Roll and Omar Abada also scored double-digit points with 14 and 10 points, respectively.
In the other Group B game between Egypt and the Central African Republic, Egypt won 72:56 behind Ehab Amins 22 points (7-of-13 FG, 4-of-6 3P) and six steals.
The Central African Republic had problems shooting as they scored more free throws (22) than field goals (14) and only shot 25.5 percent from the field.
The only downside to the Egyptian win was when center Anas Mahmoud sustained a shoulder injury.
He was eventually diagnosed with a dislocation and fracture of the shoulder cartilage and will be out for at least 10 days, essentially ending his tournament Egyptian Basketball Federation announced.
In the last and closest game of the day, Cape Verde defeated Angola 77:71 in overtime in Group A.
Cape Verde beat Angola 11-5 in extra time.
Walter Tavares led Cape Verde with 20 points, 18 rebounds, six blocks and three steals.
The most memorable moment of the game came when Tavares smashed the backboard after a dunk, causing a delay as the game tied at 66, one minute behind, in the fourth quarter.
Cape Verde carried the momentum through to the end and secured the big victory.
Carlos Morais, who played in his eighth AfroBasket, led Angola with 21 points, four rebounds and three steals.
Table status of groups A and B:
Next Group A games: Cape Verde against DR Congo and Angola against Rwanda on August 26th.
Group B next matches: Guinea versus Central African Republic and Egypt versus Tunisia on August 26th.
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