2024 Basketball Africa League: We have been drawn in a tough group, says Rivers Hoopers coach Ogoh Odaudu

Rivers Hoopers head coach Ogoh Odaudu says his team faces a huge task after Thursday’s 2024 Basketball Africa League draw.

Hoopers were drawn against former champions US Monastir, APR of Rwanda, and Senegal’s AS Douanes in the Sahara Conference.

Top two teams will advance to the BAL playoffs scheduled to take place in Kigali, Rwanda, from May 24 to the first of June.

There will also be a slot for two best third-placed teams from across the three conferences (Kalahari, Nile, and Sahara).

“The group is obviously a very tough one, Odaudu said.”

”Former champions US Monastir, APR who defeated the Rwandan team (REG), who were at the BAL last year; they are a very tough team too. Of course, last year’s finalist, AS Douanes, is in that group, so we have been placed in the group of death.

While the other two conferences will hold in March and April, the Nigeria Premier League Champions won’t play until May 4.

Odaudu added, ”Notwithstanding, we have enough time to prepare and be there. We will overcome once the jump ball comes.”

Since the inaugural edition in 2021, Rivers Hoopers and Kwara Falcons are the only Nigerian teams who have played in the BAL, and neither have gone past the group stage.

The former Nigeria international wants his team to be the first Nigerian team to make it to the playoffs of the Basketball Africa League.

“First and foremost, getting out of the group is our target for this year’s BAL. We are tired of just going to participate and coming back home after the first round.

“For us this season, we want to ensure we get to Kigali and be in the playoffs. Whatever happens from there on is a bonus.

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