D’Tigers will play Congo and Kenya in Group B at the maiden FIBA Africa Cup of Nations organised for home-based teams in the Malian capital of Bamako from July 19 to 27.
The competition will feature 12 countries divided into four groups.
Hosts Mali in Group A will play Ivory Coast, and Algeria. Group C will see giants Angola slug it out with Morocco and Chad while Tunisia, Egypt and Guinea will fight for supremacy in Group D.
Christened AfroCAN, the competition is designed by FIBA Africa to fill the gap of the new system of the Afrobasket, which will now be held every four years. It is also for players plying their trade on the African continent and not limited to players playing within a country alone.
The AfroCAN will also be staged every four years but not in the same calendar year as the Afrobasket. The format of the Afrobasket sees players from every part of the world as eligible to play for his or her country of birth or descent.
Reacting to the new development, FIBA Africa president, Anibal Manave, said the main purpose of the new competition was “to give home-based players hope and to develop the local leagues.”
Harounna Maiga, Mali Basketball Federation president, said, “Mali is very excited to host the first edition. All arrangements have been made to ensure a successful championship and I am wishing all the countries success in this competition.”