DAKAR (FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 African Qualifiers) - Central African Republic (CAF) guard Kurt-Curry Wegscheider is the youngest player to feature in the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 African Qualifiers so far but he will not let that deter him in his mission.
A lot has changed in the past four decades.
These World Cup Qualifiers will see five African sides qualify for the first-ever 32-team FIBA Basketball World Cup, taking place from August 31-September 15, 2019, in China.
And the two-time African champions who finished with a 1-2 mark in the first-leg of the African Qualifiers in Group B believe they have what it takes to get to that stage.
The teenager - whose zeal and impact on court is admired to the extent that team captain Kouguere said he is the future of the team - is helping his country's cause by going up against top point guards to make a case for his inclusion on the team.
"It is a great pleasure because when I was younger, I used to watch Max Kouguere play for CAF colors on TV. So now, it is a big pride to play with him and he gives me advice. He is always motivating me," Wegsheider went on.
"I still have a lot of work to do because my goal is to be one of the team leaders and it is not the case yet so I will work hard to do so. At my age, they are trusting me a lot and it is my role to give my best to prove that they are not wrong so that they can trust me more in the future."
Central African Republic came so close to winning their opening tie against giants Senegal but ultimately fell short and lost 70-65. When they lost 59-52 to hosts Mozambique the following day in a similar fashion, they found themselves between a rock and a hard place going into their last game against Cote d'Ivoire.
Another loss would have dealt a very serious blow to their hopes of advancing to the Second Round. It is this same fight that they took into their matchup against the Ivorians in a scintillating game that brought the very best from both sides.
"This was a very important victory for us as a team especially because we had two defeats already. For our country and our pride, we had to do it. We wanted three victories but things did not happen as we wanted," he explained.
Wegscheider, who was named the 2017 Most Valuable Player at the Basketball Without Borders (BWB) Africa camp, is currently part of the NBA Academy in Dakar, Senegal, where he is harnessing his skills.