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Uzoh Set To Make BAL History

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D’Tigers point guard, Ben Uzoh, who has joined Nigeria’s Rivers Hoopers, is poised to become the first former NBA player to play in the Basketball Africa League, having played for the New Jersey Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers and Toronto Raptors from 2010 to 2012.
Uzoh was a member of D’Tigers at the 2016 Olympics, FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 and FIBA AfroBasket in 2013 and 2015.
BAL last Friday unveiled the rosters of all 12 teams ahead of the league’s inaugural season, which tips off Sunday at the Kigali Arena in Rwanda.
Rwanda’s Patriots BC plays Nigeria’s representatives, Rivers Hoopers in the first BAL Game.
The BAL rosters feature 154 players from 24 countries across Africa, Europe, the Middle East and the United States.
Each of the 12 teams, which come from 12 African countries, will have up to 13 players (12 active and one inactive), at least nine of whom are citizens in their respective team’s home country and up to four of whom are from other countries, with no more than two players per team from outside of Africa.
Nine players bring NBA G League experience to BAL’s first season – Brandon Jay Costner and Prince Ibeh (Rwanda’s Patriots BBC), Myck Kabongo and Demarcus Holland (Mozambique’s Ferroviàrio de Maputo), Ibrahima Thomas (Mali’s AS Police), Uzoh, Taren Sullivan and Robert Daniels (Rivers Hoopers), and Ater Majok (Tunisia’s US Monastir).
Twenty-one BAL players have NCAA Division 1 experience, with 11 of the 12 teams featuring at least one former Division 1 player.
BAL teams feature a combined 19 players who previously participated in Basketball Without Borders Africa, the NBA and FIBA’s global basketball development and community outreach programme for top prospects from across the continent, including Mohab Yasser Abdelaty Abdallatif (Egypt’s Zamalek).  Abdallatif is poised to graduate from NBA Academy Africa this year and becomes the first NBA Academy prospect to play in the BAL.

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Infantino Reveals How Nigeria Can Host FIFA Competitions

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FIFA President, Gianni Infantino last Thursday, in Abuja, revealed how Nigeria can be made a destination for top Grade A football matches and FIFA competitions.
Infantino gave the insight when the Minister of Youth and Sports Development, Sunday Dare took him on a tour of the renovated main bowl of the MoshoodAbiola National Stadium.
The FIFA boss, who was visibly happy with the re-grassed pitch at the stadium, said well-maintained stadia with good pitches were key to hosting grade A matches.
He said FIFA was ready to work more closely with Nigeria to develop the game and host more grade A matches in the country.
“We (FIFA) have to make sure when a country, when a government with the President, the minister and private persons are investing in football, in stadia, we work with them to give something back.
“It’s obvious that stadiums like this (MoshoodAbiola stadium) and others in Nigeria deserve the best quality games.
“They deserve top national team games, top club games and it’s not just about Nigerian football or African football, it’s about global football.
“We are working together to see what kind of new opportunities, competitions we can bring for men and women to fill this stadium and make the heart of the stadium beat for the fantastic spectacle that all of the Nigerian love, which is football,” he said.
Earlier, the minister said the Federal Government will continue to invest in sports development and facilities.
Tidesports source reports that the FIFA President, in the company of the minister, had earlier visited President Muhammadu Buhari at the Statehouse, as part of his engagement.

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Why NFF Must Offset Rohr’s Salaries, Bonuses  – Aikhomogbe

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Former Nigerian goal keeper, Andrew Aikhomogbe has called on the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to resolve every outstanding salaries and bonuses owed to the Super Eagles coach, Gernot Rohr before the next World Cup qualifiers against Central Africa Republic (CAR).
Aikhomogbe made this known on the backdrop of the football body’s recent deal with Baba Ijebu.
Although the financial details of the deal was not disclosed, Aikhomogbe in an interview with Newsmen from his base in Cairo, Egypt, stated that the NFF should use this platform to offset Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“It’s a big delight to know that the Nigeria Football Federation have signed a deal with Baba Ijebu and this will serve as an opportunity for them to use part of the money to pay Rohr’s salaries and bonuses.
“There is no better time to motivate him than now before Nigeria’s next 2022 World Cup qualifiers against the Central Africa Republic (CAR) on October,” he said.

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Enyimba Players Vow To Support  Finidi

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Enyimba FC Goalkeeper, John Noble has stated that the players of the People’s Elephants will be key to the success of the newly appointed coach of the team, Finidi George.
Finidi, signed a two-year deal with Enyimba and oversaw his first full training session with the team on Thursday after a cameo appearance on Wednesday.
Speaking in a chat with Tidesports source, Noble  gave his assessment of the coach in his first session under the manager and believes the former Super Eagles winger has what it takes to lead the team to the next level.
He added that the Enyimba players will be the ones to hand Finidi George his success at the club.

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