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Cameroon pip Senegal to 2024 Paris Olympics men’s basketball ticket

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Cameroon national men’s basketball team are winners of the 2024 Paris pre-Olympics qualifiers, claiming the only ticket on offer from Africa in the men’s event.

Cameroon beat West African powerhouse, Senegal 80-74 in a tense final.

The game which was decided at the Eko Hotel and Suites, was filled with tension and suspense, saw both teams approach the first quarter cautiously, and ended the first quarter 25–25.

In the second quarter, the Central Africans took control of the game

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with their points guards looking unstoppable which enabled them to win the quarter 47–33.

After the break, the Cameroonians continued to dictate the pace of the game, and held on to win the third quarter 62–54 and the final 80–74 to ensure they are through to the final leg of the Olympics qualifiers to be held next year.

In a post-match briefing, Cameroonian Coach, Alfred Baliaba, believes they got the right momentum in the game while hailing the players.

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Baliaba says the competition has shown that Cameroonian basketball has progressed immensely compared to their performance at the 2021 Adrobasket tournament when they lost all their games and were the first to exit.

” I’m happy with this victory which is an indication that our game has improved tremendously. If you remember at the 2021 Afrobasketball finals, we came 6th out of the 16 teams that participated in that championship and what this victory shows is that we’re moving on.

Up next for Cameroon is the final round of Paris Olympics qualifiers to be held in 2024 and Baliaba says he will continue to get the best players to represent the country.

“I have said it before, you can always bet on the best. This is not our best. We will continue to improve day after day, game after game, competition after competition. When we get there we can assemble the ones we can in a training camp and the best will represent Cameroon,” he said.

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While Cameroon will play in the final Olympics qualifying tournament, the best African placed team at the FIBA Men’s World Cup set to dunk off in a few days will pick an automatic ticket to the 2024 Paris games.

For the coach of Senegal, Mamadou Gueye, the team has now shifted their focus to the African championships scheduled to hold in two years.

Host, Nigeria, Mali, Guinea, Tunisia, Senegal, and Cameron took part in the qualifiers. DR Congo and Uganda were last-minute withdrawals.

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