Nigeria senior national team, D’Tigers Sunday defeated 2009 runner-up Cote D’Ivoire by 77-67 to finish third and a slot for London 2012 Olympic Games playoffs.
The Nigerian side who put behind the semi-final lose to Angola Saturday rose to the challenge with a 20-17 and 20-10 points win in the first and second quarters to take a 13 points lead going into the break.
Nigeria was however, slowed down in the third quarter by the Ivoriens who back to pick the quarter by 18-23 but it was the Coach Ayo Bakare tutored Nigerian side that carried the day as the romp on to a 19-17 points win in the fourt quarter to emd the series with bronze medal after two championship misses in 2007 and 2009 where Nigeria best was 5th placement.
With the third place finish in the 26th edition in Antananarivo, Madagascar Nigeria has earned for itself a Pre-Olympic Games ticket in a yet to be named venue.
Nigeria Derrick Obasohan led his team quest for honours with 19 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists, Michael Umeh had 14 points, 8 rebounds, 3 steals and 2 assists while the duo pf Ikechukwu Ofoegbu and Ejike Ugboaja added 13 points, 5 rebounds and 11 points, 10 rebounds.