On the final day of the 2017 IWBF Africa World Championship Qualifiers not only were the medals up for grabs, but also the winners of the men’s and women’s competitions would take the two spots available at the 2018 IWBF World Championships set to take place in Hamburg, Germany next year.
In the men’s final there was a surprising result as Morocco defeated reigning champions Algeria, comprehensively, 63-32. The game started fairly evenly, as the lead exchanged hands numerous times in the opening quarter. In the second quarter though, Morocco stamped their intent on the game with a 10-point unanswered run, as the pressure seemed to shake Algeria who struggled to convert and went in trailing 28-18 at half-time.
The third quarter saw Algeria’s shooting woes continue as they failed to score until five minutes into the quarter, and Morocco capitalised on this to take a 22-point advantage into the final quarter. Morocco put the game even more out of reach in the final quarter, winning it 17-8 to take the victory and claim the gold medal. Algeria with the consolation of the silver medal. Statistics
South Africa men’s team put up a sterling fight in the bronze medal game against Egypt, losing by just three points, 50-53. Following their big win against South Africa in the group stages, Egypt came into the third-fourth place playoff with their confidence high. South Africa were not deterred, however, and despite Egypt pushing to a five-point lead at the end of the first quarter, 14-19, South Africa came back to take the lead going into the half-time break, 28-27. The second half continued to be end to end action, but it was South Africa who were rueing their missed shots at the end of the game as the Egyptians were more clinical under the basket to clinch the bronze medal.
There were no surprises in the women’s final with Algeria’s experience shining through as they triumphed against South Africa, 53-25. Algeria stormed out the blocks to take a commanding lead at the end of the first, 18-6. The momentum stayed with them in the second quarter as their speed caused the South African’s problems, giving them a 23-point advantage. South Africa rallied in the third quarter winning it 9-11, although it wasn’t to be enough to dent Algeria’s lead as they saw it out winning the fourth 9-2, and the Championship.
Zimbabwe claimed the women’s bronze medal over Kenya, 29-6. Despite Kenya matching Zimbabwe in the opening quarter, 6-6, they struggled with Zimbabwe’s defensive intensity in the next three quarters as they pressed Kenya to keep them scoreless for the remainder of the game, 10-0, 7-0 and 6-0. Statistics
- Morocco (Qualified for 2018 World Championships)
- South Africa
- Algeria (Qualified for 2018 World Championships)
- South Africa