Photo: FIBA

The final two spots in the quarterfinals of AfroBasket 2021 have been filled by Uganda and South Sudan after wins today in the qualification round.

In the first game, Uganda defeated Nigeria 80-68.

As a team, Uganda shot the ball well, shooting 16-of-33 from three-point.

Robinson Opong led the way with 19 points on 6-of-10 shooting from three-point.

Ish Wainright had another solid all-around game with 11 points, 11 rebounds, six assists and three steals.

Nigeria, meanwhile, was led by the team’s leading scorer Uzodinma Utomi with 23 points.

“The key to game was our defense,” Uganda head coach George Galanopoulos said. “Holding them under 36 percent from the field; we forced 19 turnovers. I think what is going to be more impactful in the future is the influence that these players will have on the new generation.”

Uganda will face Cape Verde in the quarterfinals on Sept. 2, as those countries were the last two to qualify for AfroBasket 2021.

This is now the farthest that Uganda has advanced at an AfroBasket in their third-ever appearance.

Uganda previously finished 15th at AfroBasket 2015 and 13th at AfroBasket 2017 with a combined record of 1-7 in those two tournaments.


In the final game of the day, South Sudan took down fellow East African nation Kenya 60-58.

South Sudan was up by as many as 20, but got outscored 34-21 in the second half.

Kenya even had a chance to win, but Tylor Ongwae (13 points, 10 rebounds, five assists) missed a three-pointer at the buzzer.

Both South Sudan and Kenya struggled with their shot, shooting 26.0 percent and 34.3 percent from the field, respectively, and 14.6 percent and 25.0 percent from three-point, respectively.

South Sudan, in their first-ever AfroBasket, will now face Tunisia (defending AfroBasket 2017 champions) in the quarterfinals on Sept. 2.


The four quarterfinal matchups:

Sept. 1: Senegal vs. Angola

Sept. 1: Cote d’Ivoire vs. Guinea

*Winners of Sept. 1 games will play each other in the semifinals

Sept. 2: Tunisia vs. South Sudan

Sept. 2: Cape Verde vs. Uganda

*Winners of Sept. 2 games will play each other in the semifinals