Temps de lecture : 3 mn 🕗
BAMAKO (Mali) – The 2021 FIBA Women's AfroBasket was a close call for Mali as they fell short of lifting the trophy against favorites Nigeria who recorded a three-peat, but Mali hope to have learned from mistakes and make the 2023 edition a successful story.
It was the second time Mali got that close to the crown since 2009 when finished second.
Given Mali's consistency on the podium in the last three editions (bronze in 2017 and 2019 and silver in the last edition), they cannot be ruled out as title contenders
FIBA.basketball takes a look at the Mali ahead of the championship
ranking: 27th in the world; 2nd in Africa
Last participation in Women's AfroBasket: 2021
Best result at the AfroBasket: African champions in 2007
How they qualified for the AfroBasket: Mali qualified as runners-up at the 2021 Women's AfroBasket.
Africa: Mali no doubt is not a team to be toyed with in the Women's AfroBasket.
They hold a fear factor many teams are afraid of because of their consistency. They represented Africa at the 2022 FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup held in Australia.
Mali traveled to Senegal for the fiba africa Championship for Women 2007 qualifying tournament for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing. The squad won the first round with a 4–1 record, losing only to host Senegal.
2023 AfroBasket Group: Group C comprises of Mali, Senegal, and Uganda.
Star Player: Sika Kone is one of Mali's most treasured players. The Malian star has recently joined CB Perfurmarias Avenida in Spain's Liga. Feminina.
She was drafted by the New York Liberty of the Women's National Basketball Association (wnba) in the 3rd round.
From her youth national teams' debut in 2017 to now, Kone has been nothing short of impressive in her national colours, showing why she is often dubbed a ‘double threat'.
At the 2021 U19 Women's Basketball World Cup in Hungary Kone made history with Mali, lifting the African nation to its first-ever Semi-Final appearance.
Proving that she is a player set apart from the rest, Kone was named to the All-Tournament team after leading all players with 19.7 points per game and 14.8 rebounds.
A few months later, Kone returned for Mali but this time with the senior team, where she played her part in getting the country a second-place finish at the 2021 Women's AfroBasket.
Coach: Oumarou Sidiya has for a long time been in charge of Mali youth teams. He has contributed to some of Mali's seven titles in the U16 championship and will have most of his girls who are now seniors at his service when the Women's AfroBasket begins in Kigali, Rwanda.
Sidy Yaya has as his assistant Hamchetou Maiga, a former Mali international players played in the WNBA and represented her country at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Outlook: One thing that Mali isn't short of is talent and experience of playing at high level. Whether or not they can live to expectations, time will tell, but this Mali team can't be underestimated. With an array of top players from the WNBA and the U19 team, Mali looks strong to contend for the title.