Friday,20 October, 2017
Current issue | Issue 1311, (8 - 21 September 2016)
Friday,20 October, 2017
Issue 1311, (8 - 21 September 2016)

Ahram Weekly

Second is good enough

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Al-Ahram Weekly

EGYPT’S under-18 women’s basketball team qualified to the 2017 World Cup in Italy after finishing second in the African championship in Cairo, Abeer Anwar reports.

The young female Pharaohs did their utmost to make up for the loss of four of the team’s pillars due to injury. But there was nothing Egypt could do to prevent Mali from defending their FIBA Africa U-18 women’s championship title last Sunday. Playing in front of a sellout home crowd, Egypt lost 84-61.

Two years after finishing runners-up to Mali, Egypt looked determined to turn their fortunes around, but the Western Africans proved too much for them.

As well as finishing the tournament undefeated in six games, Mali never trailed, dominating Egypt from start to finish. Stars Meral Abdel-Gawad and Radwa Sherif  were the only Egyptians to score in double figures.

But Egypt, along with Mali, will represent Africa at next summer’s FIBA U-19 World Championship for women in Italy.

Meral Abdel-Gawad was named the tournament’s best playmaker. She was also named among the FIBA Africa U-18 women’s championship all-star tournament team alongside teammate Nesma Khalifa, Silvia Veloso (Mozambique), and Mali duo of Aminata Diakite and Coulibaly.

In the game for third place Mozambique led all but 47 seconds to beat Angola 56-43.

Earlier in the day, Madagascar beat Tunisia 59-45 to finish fifth, while Algeria finished seventh thanks to a 59-43 victory over Uganda.

Attending the final match, Khaled Abdel-Aziz, minister of youth and sports, expressed his satisfaction. “The girls did their best to win although they did not, but qualifying to the World Cup is an achievement in itself. They were up to the challenge even though they were missing a number of their key players. I am really happy and satisfied with the silver medal.”

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