The world governing body for basketball, FIBA, has replaced Nigeria’s female basketball team, the D’Tigress, with Mali for the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2022 in Belgrade.
Nigeria was disqualified after President Muhammadu Buhari suspended the country from participating in all international basketball competitions and activities for a period of two years.
The President’s withdrawal is said to be aimed at revamping the sports from the grassroots in Nigeria.
“FIBA was informed about the decision of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to withdraw the Nigeria Basketball Federation (NBBF) from all international basketball competitions and activities for a period of two years,” a statement from FIBA said.
“In subsequent communications with the NBBF, and despite FIBA’s request, it has become clear that against the circumstances created by the government’s decision, the NBBF is unable to confirm its participation in the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2022.
“Given the multiple strict deadlines that cannot be postponed in order to ensure the successful staging of a major international event (visa procedures, schedules, ticket sales, accommodations, friendly games, preliminary rosters, flight tickets, accreditations, etc.) and to protect the integrity of the competition, the FIBA Executive Committee has decided as follows:
“Nigeria’s withdrawal from the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2022 is confirmed. Mali, as the next ranked team from Group B of the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2022 Qualifying Tournament in Belgrade, is invited to participate in the FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup 2022.
“FIBA will announce whether there will be any other decisions related to the NBBF’s participation in other FIBA competitions and any potential disciplinary measures in due course.”
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