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Gabon's Lasme eager to return to AfroBasket - Jan 28, 2015


POSTED BY:
OLUSEGUN IKUESAN
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Stephane
Lasme
Stephane Lasme may be enjoying a successful career in Europe these days, but he can't feel the same about his national team.

The Anadolu Efes Istanbul of Turkey forward last represented his native Gabon at the 2005 FIBA African Championship in Algiers, Algeria.

In that tournament, Lasme - at the time a promising sophomore at University of Massachusetts - led Gabon in scoring and rebounding with averages of 11.7 points and 10 rebounds per game.

Since then, things have not been the same for the player and his country. While the 32-year-old had a short stint in the NBA and went on to become a household name in Europe, Gabon have disappeared from participating in FIBA Africa's flagship championship.

However, in March Gabon could resurge from a decade-long anonymity when they host the FIBA Africa Zone-4 qualifier against the Central African Republic (CAF) and Chad.

The winner of the three-team qualifier will punch a ticket for AfroBasket 2015, which will be played in Tunisia from 20 to 30 August.

By the time March rolls around and Gabon try to see off their regional opponents in front of their home fans, Lasme will probably be featuring for the Efes in the Last 16 of the Turkish Airlines Euroleague.

But he pledges to follow the qualifying tournament closely.

"I wish I could go play for my country, too bad the competition is in March. If I could, I would be there in a heartbeat," the Port-Gentil native told FIBA.com. If we qualify, I definitely will go to the AfroBasket. I miss playing on the national team. - Lasme

"We have a strong chance to qualify and I hope we do."

Lasme, the 2013 Best Defender in the Euroleague, is currently Gabon's best known basketball player and feels he has a mission to accomplish with his national team.

What is it that makes AfroBasket so special for Lasme?

"[AfroBasket] becomes better and better every year," he said.

"Playing [in the 2005 edition of the tournament] gave me a lot of confidence going back the following year [to the University of Massachusetts]. It was a great experience."

Courtesy: FIBA.com Stephane Lasme (203-C-82, college: Massachusetts)   




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Men Women

Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
 Ikechukwu DIOGU
  NGR
  (204-C/F-83)
  Avg: 22
 1. Diogu, NGR22.0 
 2. Benoit, CMR21.8 
 3. Djambo, MLI17.0 
 4. Kante, MLI15.3 
 5. Odoch Opong, UGA15.3 
 6. Adala-Moto, CMR15.0 
 7. Kabasele, COD14.8 
 8. Iroegbu, NGR14.8 
 9. Conde, GUI14.7 
 10. Kabangu, RWA14.7 
Rebounds Per Game
 Makram BEN ROMDHANE
  TUN
  (204-PF-89)
  Avg: 10.5
 1. Ben-Romdhane, TUN10.5 
 2. Benoit, CMR9.3 
 3. Diogu, NGR8.7 
 4. Sidibe, MLI8.3 
 5. Djimrabaye, CAF7.3 
 6. Adala-Moto, CMR7.0 
 7. Shonganya, COD6.8 
 8. Dieng, SEN6.8 
 9. Bamba, IVO6.7 
 10. Akindele, NGR6.7 
Assists Per Game
 Ike IROEGBU
  NGR
  (188-G-95)
  Avg: 5
 1. Iroegbu, NGR5.0 
 2. Kabongo, COD4.8 
 3. Toti, IVO4.7 
 4. Hannah, SEN4.3 
 5. Gasana, RWA4.0 
 6. El-Mabrouk, TUN3.8 
 7. Niang, SEN3.5 
 8. Enabu, UGA3.0 
 9. El Gamal, EGY3.0 
 10. Njoya, CMR3.0 
Steals Per Game
 Mahamadou KANTE
  MLI
  (192-G-92)
  Avg: 3.3
 1. Kante, MLI3.3 
 2. Gasana, RWA3.0 
 3. Kabongo, COD2.8 
 4. Benoit, CMR2.0 
 5. Cipriano, ANG2.0 
 6. Sidibe, MLI2.0 
 7. Mbamalu, NGR1.8 
 8. Bamba, IVO1.7 
 9. Diabate, IVO1.7 
 10. Conde, GUI1.7 
Blocks Per Game
 Herve KABASELE
  (208-C-96)
  Avg: 2.8
 1. Kabasele, COD2.8 
 2. Kambuy, COD2.5 
 3. Sidibe, MLI1.0 
 4. Diallo, GUI1.0 
 5. NDiaye, SEN1.0 
 6. Akindele, NGR0.8 
 7. Najah, MOR0.8 
 8. Choua, MOR0.8 
 9. Ndoye, SEN0.8 
 10. Prinsloo, RSA0.7 
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