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Diabate takes aim at AfroBasket 2015 title, spot for Rio 2016 Games - Jul 5, 2015


POSTED BY:
OLUSEGUN IKUESAN
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Mohamed Kone
Cote d'Ivoire's Souleyman Diabate will take part in this year's AfroBasket focusing on claiming the continental title and qualifying for 2016 Olympics.

The 1.80m point guard, who will be making his fifth appearance in Africa's biggest basketball event, has high aspirations for his country.

"My dream is to see Cote d'Ivoire punch the ticket for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. It will be great for me to face off [against the] world's top players," he told FIBA.com.

The native of Abidjan is aware that his Olympic dreams can only come true if the team achieves a better result than it did not when hosting AfroBasket 2013 in Abidjan.

"We have to win this tournament for our fans. Most of our players are getting older and it will be huge reward for them," Diabate said.

The 28-year-old playmaker is in the country's capital Abidjan with other players to start preparations on July 8.

Cote d'Ivoire - continental champions in 1981 and 1985 - will be chasing their third crown at the 16-team tournament in Nabeul and Tunis, Tunisia from 19-30 August.

Two years ago, the Ivorians fell short of reaching the podium as a result of a painful 57-56 loss to Senegal in the Third-Place Game.

Diabate the 2013 still remembers miss with some level of bitterness.

"AfroBasket 2013 had something particular. It was my first big tournament on home soil. Playing in front of our fans and my family brought me great happiness," he recalled.

However, he is confident that Cote d'Ivoire have what it takes to win it all in Tunisia.

"We have a team which can make it in this tournament. The members of the group have achieved more experience by playing together for several years. If all our key players are injury-free and adding new fresh players, we can play a leading role this summer," Diabate said.

Cote d'Ivoire will open their campaign on 20 August against Cape Verde in Group-D, before taking on Zimbabwe and Algeria.

The winner of AfroBasket 2015 will automatically qualify for next year's Olympic Basketball Tournament.

The teams that finish second and third will earn the right to compete in the 12-team FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournament (OQT).

FIBA.com
Mohamed Kone (211-C-81, college: Valparaiso)   



Angola refuses to host Afrobasket 2017 - 13 hours ago
Angola will not host the African Men's Basketball Championship (Afrobasket2017), said the secretary general of the Angolan Basketball Federation (FAB), Nelson Sardinha. Speaking to ANGOP, he said that Fiba Africa proposed to Angola to hold the continental competition during the congress held this month in Bamako, Mali, but it was rejected by the Ministry of Youth and Sports, alleging that in August, attentions will be focused on the election period   [read more]
Angola selected as new host country for FIBA AfroBasket 2017 - 9 days ago
Angola will replace the Republic of Congo as the host country of FIBA AfroBasket 2017, FIBA Africa announced on Friday. The decision comes following the withdrawal of the Republic of Congo, who pointed to logistics issues as the reason for their inability to host Africa's flagship basketball competition. The 16-team event will run from August 19-30. Angola has hosted it on three occasions before - in 1989, 1999 and 2007   [read more]
Guinea and Rwanda awarded wild cards for FIBA AfroBasket 2017 - 12 days ago
FIBA Africa's Executive Committee on Tuesday awarded the two wild cards for FIBA AfroBasket 2017 to Guinea and Rwanda. The two teams complete the 16-team line-up for this summer's tournament due to take place in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo from August 19-30   [read more]


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African Championships Standings
Group A
 1. Tunisia 3-0 
 2. Nigeria 2-1 
 3. C.Africa 1-2 
 4. Uganda 0-3 
Group B
 1. Senegal 3-0 
 2. Angola 2-1 
 3. Mozambique. 1-2 
 4. Morocco 0-3 
Group C
 1. Egypt 3-0 
 2. Cameroon 2-1 
 3. Mali 1-2 
 4. Gabon 0-3 
Group D
 1. Cape Verde. 3-0 
 2. Ivory Coas. 2-1 
 3. Algeria 1-2 
 4. Zimbabwe 0-3 
Stats Leaders
Points Per Game
 Gorgui DIENG
  SEN
  (211-C-90)
  Avg: 22.6
 1. Dieng, SEN22.6 
 2. Xavier, USA19.6 
 3. Matos, POR18.8 
 4. Diabate, IVO18.4 
 5. Kouguere, CGO18.0 
 6. Harath, ALG16.9 
 7. Oguchi, NGR16.6 
 8. Kourodu, MOR16.6 
 9. Mendy, SEN16.3 
 10. Zouita, MOR15.8 
Rebounds Per Game
 Gorgui DIENG
  SEN
  (211-C-90)
  Avg: 14.9
 1. Dieng, SEN14.9 
 2. Mascarenhas, CPV10.0 
 3. Lawal, NGR9.0 
 4. Chikoko, ZIM8.8 
 5. Almeida, CPV8.4 
 6. Marei, EGY8.4 
 7. Sebirumbi, USA7.8 
 8. Grebongo, CAF7.6 
 9. Aminu, NGR7.3 
 10. Ben Romdhane, TUN7.3 
Assists Per Game
 Xane DALMEIDA
  SEN
  (181-PG-83)
  Avg: 7.4
 1. Dalmeida, SEN7.4 
 2. Khalfi, MOR6.0 
 3. Diabate, IVO5.8 
 4. Almeida, CPV4.4 
 5. Xavier, USA4.0 
 6. Matos, MOZ3.8 
 7. Dieng, SEN3.7 
 8. Benzegala, USA3.7 
 9. Kamal, EGY3.4 
 10. Kante, MLI3.3 
Steals Per Game
 Destin DAMACHOUA
  CAF
  (185-G-86)
  Avg: 3.6
 1. Damachoua, CAF3.6 
 2. Essono Mve, GAB3.0 
 3. Diabate, IVO2.8 
 4. Matos, MOZ2.8 
 5. Almeida, CPV2.8 
 6. Amin, EGY2.4 
 7. Akanda-C., CAN2.4 
 8. Boundou, GAB2.0 
 9. Maturure, ZIM2.0 
 10. Harras, MOR2.0 
Blocks Per Game
 Vitalis CHIKOKO
  ZIM
  (207-F/C-91)
  Avg: 3.2
 1. Chikoko, ZIM3.2 
 2. Mejri, TUN2.5 
 3. Lasme, GAB1.8 
 4. Dieng, SEN1.3 
 5. Aminu, NGR1.3 
 6. Moreira, ANG1.3 
 7. Oraby, EGY1.3 
 8. Almeida, CPV1.2 
 9. Sene, SEN1.2 
 10. Mascarenhas, CPV1.2 
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