LUANDA (AfroBasket Women 2015) - In the lead-up to AfroBasket Women 2015, we take a closer look at all 12 participating teams competing in the championship running from 24 September-3 October in Yaounde, Cameroon.
FIBA Ranking Women: 18th
Last participation at AfroBasket Women: 2013 (Undefeated in 8 games, Champions)
Best result in the history of AfroBasket Women: Two-time African Champions (2011 and 2013).
Qualified for AfroBasket Women 2015: Winners of AfroBasket Women 2013.
History/Qualification: It required the Angolans years of hard work to reach their current position in African basketball scene. It finally paid off four years ago when they upset Senegal in the AfroBasket Women Final in Bamako, Mali.
Two years later, they remained in winning mode to beat hosts Mozambique in their capital city of Maputo to clinch their second AfroBasket Women title and become the second national team - after Nigeria - to win back-to-back championships.
Despite losing all eight of their games in the last two major world basketball tournaments - the 2012 Olympics and 2014 FIBA Women's World Championship for Women - Angola are currently the highest ranked team in Africa ahead of Mali and Senegal.
They currently hold a 14-game winning streak at AfroBasket Women. They have not lost since a 63-42 defeat against Senegal on Day 1 of AfroBasket Women 2011.
In Yaounde, they will take aim at securing the only direct qualification spot on offer for African teams.
Key Player: Team captain Nacissela Mauricio, Nadir Manuel and Fineza Eusebio remain pivotal for the Angolans.
Rising Star: Point guard Rosa Gala has shown tremendous improvement in the last edition of the Angolan championship, and should be remain crucial coming off the bench.
Outlook: The reigning champions are the team to beat, and they know it. And 10-time Africa champions Senegal - their Group B opponent - emerge as Angola’s fiercest contender.
The Angolans not only upset the Western Africans once, but twice in the recent years, including a 46-43 Semi-Final loss in the AfroBasket Women a couple of years ago.
Continuity as well as team chemistry seem to be Angola's main assets as seven players who helped the country win the last two editions of the tournament remain in the team and some of them, including Manuel, Mauricio and Sonia Guadalupe appear to be in their prime.
Newly-appointed head coach Jaime Covilha called all but two players who represented the country at last summer's Women's Worlds.
He also added former U19 Women's World Championship champion Italee Lucas, who has helped Angolan side InterClube de Luanda win the last two editions of African Champions Cup for Women.
Lucas, a US-born point guard, has been living and playing in Angola for the past four years, and acquired Angolan citizenship this year.
Possible outcome: If Lucas is cleared to compete in the tournament, the Angolans could reach the Semi-Finals.