Zimbabwe and Egypt met in the opening game of the 2017 IWBF Africa World Championship Qualifiers. It was a slow start for both teams, but it was Egypt who took control of the game as Zimbabwe struggled to convert their opportunities allowing Egypt to go on a scoring run at the end of the first quarter, giving them a fifteen-point lead, 24-9. It was a much more even second quarter with the score tied 12-12.
However, in the second half, Zimbabwe’s turnovers continued to hurt them, and Egypt capitalised scoring thirty points in total from the mistakes of their opposition, winning the third and the fourth quarter, 21-6 and 19-6 respectively. It was a polished performance by Egypt as they gave all of their players court time and secured their first win of the tournament, 76-33. Statistics
Egypt’s Ashraf Abouzied Amar top scored with 15 points and 11 rebounds followed closely by Mohamed Farag Abdelaziz’s 14 points and Rabie Hosni Gouda’s 13 points. Zimbabwe’s top scorer was Fredrick Ganyaupfu with a double-double of 11 points and 10 rebounds, whilst Daniel Nyuke also added 9 points.
The second game of the day was very much a one-sided affair as the reigning African Champions, Algeria, took on a much less experienced Kenyan team. The relentless defensive pressure took its toll on Kenya as they struggled to score, shooting at just 16% from the field. Algeria put their marker down for the tournament, with a resounding 107–13 win. Statistics
Algeria’s captain, Nabil Guedoun, led by example top scoring with 23 points supported by Bilel Ayache and Sofiane Maatou with 21 points and 19 points respectively. Kenya’s captain Odiyo Henry Caleb Otieno was their leading scorer with 6 points and 13 rebounds.
The last game saw hosts South Africa meet Morocco in front of a boisterous home crowd. Morocco started off the stronger pushing out to a 5-0 lead and ending the quarter 17-10 ahead. They extended their lead in the second quarter to take a nineteen-point lead into the break as South Africa struggled to score.
The third quarter continued in the same vein as the ball refused to drop for the South African’s and Morocco added another nine points on to their advantage. Despite South Africa rallying in the final quarter, winning it 16-15, the damage had already been done and Morocco notched up their first win of the tournament, 68-41. Statistics
Morocco’s Rida Maataoui top scored with 16 points and 14 rebounds supported by Kamel Megrini’s 14 points and Aissa Falempe’s 13 points, whilst South Africa’s Simanga Amazing Mbhele led their scoring with 8 points.