LUANDA (2016 FIBA Africa U18 Championship) - Angola head coach Manuel Silva Gi has trimmed the preliminary squad from 25 to 15 players ahead of next month's FIBA Africa U18 Championship in Kigali, Rwanda.
The tournament will run from 22-31 July.
Angola are now the final phase of their preparations for the Kigali showdown.
Talking to FIBA.com, the man who guided Angola to the U16 continental Championship in 2013 title, admits that given their modest historic in the U18 Africa Championship - three continental titles - they have humble objectives.
Our goal is to improve from the Fourth-Place accomplished two years ago in Madagascar. - Gi
Asked to describe his team, Gi said: “Almost half of the team that won the U16 Championship in 2013 were born in 1997, making them ineligible for this year’s African Championship.
“A number of players are likely to miss out the competition due to academic commitment outside the country.
Given their quality, hard work with youth teams and historic in the competition, Egypt will display the highest competitive level of all contenders. - Gi
While the tactician refuses tip-toeing the title race, he picks Egypt, Mali and Tunisia as the real contenders.
“Given their quality, hard work with youth teams and historic in the competition, Egypt will display the highest competitive level of all contenders," he said.
“Mali are very strong physically, have the benefit of playing at the 2016 FIBA U17 World Championship.
“Like Egypt, Tunisia are tactically well organised. Having finished second at the last African Championship, they will surely make some noise in Kigali."