D’Tigress face stern FIBA World Cup test from USA

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Photo: FIBA
Photo: FIBA

Nigeria’s D’Tigress will come up with the biggest task of progressing beyond the quarter-finals at the 2018 FIBA Women’s World Cup in Spain when they go up against favourites the United States of America (USA) on Friday.

The Santiago Martin Arena pits the Nigerians who came off a nail-biting contest against Greece on Wednesday when they won by just a point — 57-56 — to reach the last eight for the first time in their history of appearing in the tournament.

No doubt the Americans are favourites as they have cruised through their three matches so far in wins over Senegal (87-67), China (100-88) and Latvia (102-76).

STATS IN FAVOUR OF THE USA

As things stand, D’Tigress only have a slim chance against these big, technical and power-playing American side that include the like of Nneka Ogwumike whose has Nigerian roots, Breanna Stewart, A’Ja Wilson, Tina Charles, Diana Taurasi and Layshia Clarendon.

Ogwumike who acknowledged being a Nigerian-American describes the matchup with D’Tigress as “awesome” and is already looking forward not just to the game but “sharing heritage” with her opponents.

The Los Angeles Sparks forward has weighed in with 10.7 points, 4 rebounds and 0.7 assist so far at the World Cup in Spain.

But her team are favourites in key stats when compared with Nigeria. In the field of shooting percentage, the Americans are top likewise in defensive and offensive rebounds, points from turnover, fast break points, points in the paint, biggest lead and points from the bench.

Despite America’s dominance at the World Cup so far, D’Tigress only hold a glimmer of hope in causing an upset with the like of Evelyn Akhator who has been the most influential player in their setup leading to their quarter-final qualification.

However when the contest gets underway at the Santiago Martin Arena, the defending champions USA will always be the favourites.

© The Predictor NG

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