DAKAR (FIBA AfroBasket 2017) - Senegal on Sunday defeated Mali 79-72 in overtime in their capital of Dakar to qualify for this year’s FIBA AfroBasket in Congo-Brazzaville (19-30 August).
Djibril Thiam converted four of his four three-pointer attempts en route to a game-high 25 points while Mali's Boubacar Sidibe finished with a team-best 24 points.
Senegal entered the second leg of the regional qualifier with a 1-2 mark, but the additions of Maleye Ndoye and Xane D'Almeida, as well as tactical adjustments, turned their fortunes around.
Mali also advanced to the Congo-Brazzaville showpiece as runners-up of the regional qualifier despite finishing with a tying 3-3 mark with Guinea. By conceding their fourth defeat in six games, Cape Verde were eliminated from the race for a place in FIBA Africa's flagship tournament.
Senegal and Mali sealed their tickets to Brazzaville, joining African champions Nigeria, FIBA AfroBasket 2017 hosts Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Uganda, Cote d’Ivoire, Morocco, Tunisia and Mozambique.
Meanwhile, the winner of the ongoing FIBA Africa Zone 6 Group G, which consists of Angola, South Africa and Zambia, will qualify for Congo-Brazzaville while the team that finishes runners-up will face Zimbabwe for a place in the Final Round.
The last two places for the FIBA AfroBasket 2017 will be attributed via a wild card allocation process.