LUANDA (2016 Olympics) - As the ongoing 2015 FIBA Africa Champions Cup (ACC) enters the Quarter-Finals stage on Wednesday in the Angolan capital of Luanda, a number of players hoping to make it to the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics continue to shine in the competition.
While there is no Senegalese representation in this year's 10-team ACC, it is instead players from Tunisia and Angola - who claimed two of the three places for African teams for the 2016 FIBA Olympic Qualifying Tournaments (OQTs) - who have so far looked dominant in Africa's clubs flagship event.
Carlos Morais, who was a part of the Angolan team that fell short against Nigeria in the AfroBasket 2015 Final, leads Libolo with a tournament-high 17.5 points per game.
Omar Abada and Mohamed Abbassi - who helped Tunisia beat Senegal in the Third-Place Game to clinch one of the three OQTs places - have made big contributions in the Group Phase to confirm the title contender status of last year's runners-up ES Rades.
More than a dozen Angolan players competing in the ACC have proven they have realistic hopes of getting a call-up in their country's second attempt to qualify for Rio 2016. Although D'Agosto Jorge Tati - who last played for the national team at AfroBasket 2011 - ranks among the top options, it's Morais, Olimpio Cipriano and Valdelicio Joaquim who appear to be certain selections for the OQTs.
Libolo face Cape Verde champions Bairro in Wednesday's first Quarter-Final, D'Agosto go up against Nigerian Kano Pillars and ES Rades will take on Leonel Paulo’s Angolan champions Petro de Luanda.
FIBA's Executive Committee will decide the host countries of the OQTs on Tuesday 19 January. The draw for the three tournaments will follow a week later.