The Men’s senior National Basketball Team will tonight leave for China for the final phase of their 2019 FIBA World Cup preparations.
The team’s General Manager, Musa Adamu revealed that the team had to wait for the NBBF President, Musa Kida to return from Senegal where he went to cheer the D’Tigress to their fourth African title.
“I want to thank the President, Kida specially for again making our trip possible and to participate at the World Cup.
‘’Without him and the support of the federation, it would have been a different story altogether,” he said.
Meanwhile, as the team continue to prepare and wait on government intervention, Kida said the federation had to source for loan to enable them to proceed to China.
He said the federation could not afford to allow Nigeria that became the first country in the world to qualify for the world cup to miss out or go to China as mere participants.
“The journey has not been easy due to delay in the release of funds by the Federal Government, however, the federation, once again has to ensure that we do what we have to do.
‘’We made it our responsibility to do what we could do to save Nigeria from global embarrassment of missing the World Cup,” he said.
The NBBF president expressed optimism that the Federal Government would intervene and rescue the team and the federation financially, before the competition commences.
“We are trying to internally generate funds from sponsorships, but before then, the government has to support us.
‘’This is because the national teams are national property which must be catered for by the government,” he said.
Kida said the recent achievement by the vicorious D’Tigress and the heroic welcome by Nigerians was a huge encouragement to the federation.
” Despite the daunting challenges, the Coach Alex Nwora tutored side which had been in camp since July 7th, would participate in the Peak Invitational International tournament.
“The invitational comes up between Aug. 22 and Aug.2,” he said.
Nigeria will play against fellow World Cup bound Iran and Montenegro, before playing Poland in Yangzhou as part of their preparations.
The World Cup which has seen Nigeria grouped alongside Russia, Argentina and Korea, starts on Saturday, Aug. 31.