CAPE TOWN TIGERS MAKE HISTORY, ADVANCE TO SEMIFINALS

It was a night to remember for South Africa’s Cape Town Tigers, with Samkelo Cele’s three-pointer taking the game to overtime, giving the Tigers enough time to regain their composure and bring it home for a 91-88 win over Morocco’s FUS Rabat in their 2024 BAL Playoffs’ quarterfinal.  The Tigers advance to the semifinals for the first time, where they will face Senegal’s AS Douanes or Angola’s Petro de Luanda at 8:00 p.m. CAT on Wednesday.

Cele led the team with a game-high 30 points, grabbing also nine rebounds, but it was Nkosinathi Sibanyoni who made BAL history, grabbing an all-time high 25 rebounds, almost half of the team’s 53, including 14 on the offensive board.

 

“Today we had to go all out, because it’s win-or-go-home, so I’m glad we made it. I am happy for us, I am happy for Cape Town Tigers. This is for South Africa,” he said after the game.

Sibanyoni added 16 points and four assists, Cartier Diarra got 13 points and eight assists, and Dhieu Deng finished with 12 points before leaving the game in the second half with an injury.

 

Aliou Diarra led Rabat with 18 points and 16 rebounds, with a big night from NBA Academy Africa’s Mohamed Sylla who finished with 15 points, 11 rebounds and four blocked shots.

The game stayed close throughout the night, with 17 lead changes and 14 ties, but the Tigers found themselves with a 10-point lead late in the fourth, almost throwing it away in less than two minutes left on the clock, before Cele delivered when it counted most.

 

Earlier in the afternoon, Libya’s Al Ahly Ly beat the defending champion Egypt’s Al Ahly 86-77. Majok Deng, Robert Golden and Jo Lual-Acuil combined for 71 points, with no other Ly’s player scoring in double figures. Al Ahly Ly will take on the winner of the quarterfinal matchup between Nigeria’s Rivers Hoopers and Tunisia’s Monastir on Wednesday afternoon.

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