Meet The 12 D’tigress Who Conquered Africa and Made Nigeria Proud

Meet The 12 D'tigress Who Conquered Africa and Made Nigeria Proud
Meet The 12 D’tigress Who Conquered Africa and Made Nigeria Proud

Meet The 12 D’tigress Who Conquered Africa and Made Nigeria Proud

They went, they saw and they conquered the continent in style at the just concluded FIBA Women’s 2017 Afrobasket Championship in Mali, Bamako.

On Wednesday, President Muhammadu Buhari hosted the victorious players and officials of the team.

The team emerged African champions, the first time in 12 years.

The president has promised each of the victorious players N1 million while each official of the team will get N500,000.

While D’Tigress have been a reoccurring name on the lips of sports fans in the past two weeks, we give you a peep into world of these ladies that took Africa by storm to win a third title for Nigeria at the biennial flagship basketball tourney.

1. Aisha Mohammed

Birth:

October 21, 1985 (age 31)

Team

OGM Orman (Turkey)

Position

Forward

Aisha was the captain of the team and a veteran who ensured that her wealth of experience rubbed off positively on the rest of the team.

The victory in Mali was her third as she was part of the team that won 2003 edition in Mozambique and two years later on home soil.

The forward contributed a total of 33 points; thus averaging 4.1 per game as the D’Tigress blew off all the opposition that came their way.

2. Akhator Evelyn

Birth:

Feb 3, 1995 (age 22)

Team

Dallas Wings (USA)

Position

Power forward / Center

For many, asides being the top performer in the D’Tigress team, the 3rd overall pick in the 2017 WNBA was widely seen as the most valuable player, MVP, at the FIBA Women’s 2017 Afrobasket Championship.

She accounted for 122 of the total points haul of the D’Tigress.

Her highest scoring games were in the group ties against Egypt and Guinea when she scored 24 points apiece.

With an average of 9.5 rebounds per game, Akhator was rated second overall in Mali

3. Ezinne Kalu-Phelps

Birth:

Jun 26, 1992 (age 25)

Team

Vasas Akademia (Hungary)

Position

Guard

Kalu has regularly played for Nigerian senior team since 2016 and previously for U19 National Team back in 2011.

Kalu graduated from Savannah State in 2015 and it will be her third season in professional basketball.

Previously playing in Portugal where she was a hot cake, Hungarian club, Vasas Akademia (A Division) just tapped Nigerian international guard.

4. Sarah Ogoke-Ejiogu

Birth:

Jun 25, 1990 (age 27)

Team

RC Celta de Vigo (Spain)

Position

Guard

The Spain-based all-action player was part of the D’Tigress team that narrowly lost out on the title in 2015.

It is safe to say the bitter experience last time out in Cameroon spurred Sarah on in Mali as she registered an improve performance.

In all, the Celta de Vigo guard scored 67 points for D’Tigress; averaging 8.4 per game.

Sarah’s highest scoring games were against Egypt and Guinea where she had 13 points apiece to her name.

5. Adaora Elonu

Birth:

Apr 28, 1990 (age 27)

Team

CB Avenida (Spain)

Position

Forward

Elonu is another experienced player in the D’Tigress team in Mali.

She was in the Nigeria national team that won the bronze medal in the AfroBasket Women 2015.

Her outstanding performance also saw her being elected as part of the tournament’s All-Star Five in 2015.

Elonu was quite spectacular in the final match against Senegal where she scored 12 points. it was her second highest points haul during the 2017 Afrobasket.

Based on available statistics, Elonu registered the most assists in the Nigeria team; averaging 3.9 per game.

6. Chioma Udeaja

Birth:

June 29, 1984 (age 33)

Team

First Bank Basketball club (NGR)

Position

Power Forward / Centre.

Another old war-horse, Udeaja was among the three selected from the home front to rub shoulders with the foreign based stars.

The First Bank Women’s Basketball club captain was part of the team that won in 2005; and 12 years after she was part of another winning team.

With just a few playing time to herself, Udeaja supplied just 18 points all through the tournament. But nonetheless, she gave a good account of herself.

7. Nkechi Akashili

Birth:

February 22, 1990 (age 27)

Team

First Bank Basketball club (NGR)

Position

Guard

Another player from the home front and equally from the First Bank Women’s Basketball club, Akashil’s love for the dunking game pushed her to go against the wish of her dad who wanted her to play football.

The University of Lagos graduate had a fairly good outing in Mali where she raked in 45 points at an average of 5.6 per game.

8. Cecelia Okoye

Birth:

September 13, 1991 (age 25)

Team

RC Celta (Spain)

Position

Forward

While she was already living her dream as a professional basketball player, Okoye had the icing on the cake when she was presented with a chance to represent Nigeria.

The list of her past achievements is quite long. Okoye was voted All-Southland Conference 2nd Team in 2014 at her college time.

Okoye graduated from McNeese State in 2014.

9. Ugochi Nwaigwe

Birth:

May 3, 1993 (age 24)

Team

Lanus (Argentina)

Position

Centre

She was more of a bit-part player but nonetheless, she contributed her own quota even though she only had a cumulative time of 32 minutes all through the tournament in Mali. In that period, she had a total of 12 points.

10.Upe Atosu

Birth:

Apr 21, 1993 (age 24)

Team

First Bank Basketball club (NGR)

Position

Guard

The combative guard known as a workaholic did a lot to make it into coach Sam Vincent’s team and she never dropped the ball having made the cut.

Having returned 4.9 points average when the D’Tigress ended up with the Bronze last term out, Atosu like her other teammates stepped up in Mali where this time she averaged 5.8points.

Indeed, it has been good times for Atosu is recent time first with her club and now with the national team.

11. Ndidi Madu

Birth:

Mar 17, 1989 (age 28)

Team

Broni (Italy)

Position

Power Forward

After missing out on the top prize in 2015, Madu was back to give it a shot again in Mali and this time around, she and her teammates got it right.

The Power forward played in all the games at the Afrobasket 2017; but perhaps ran out of steam in the semi and final games as she failed to make any point.

Her best game in terms of points scored was against Cote d’ Ivoire where she scored 10 points. In all, the Italy-based star had 31 points cumulatively.

12.Atonye Nyingifa

Birth:

December 8, 1990 (age 26)

Team

Hapoel Rishon Le-Zion (Israel)

Position

Power Forward

The Israel-based power forward falls into the category of the newbies in D’Tigress. But indeed, she was a key member especially in terms of rebounds and assists and she finished as the third best overall in the Nigeria team.

In the eight games played, she averaged 9.1 points per game.

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