D’Tigress superstar Ezinne Kalu hints at his retirement from the national team after FIBA confirmed Nigeria’s withdrawal from the 2022 World Cup in Australia.
The official FIBA Twitter account has announced that Nigeria will now be replaced by Mali, the team they beat to secure qualification in the first place.
Ezinne Kalu did not take the news well and unofficially announced her retirement from the national team in response, making her the first D’Tigress player to react publicly to the latest development.
Why was Nigeria removed?
The Nigerian women’s national team, also known as D’Tigress, have been forced to withdraw from the 2022 World Cup for which they qualified through no fault of their own.
President Muhamadu Buhari banned all basketball activities in the country for two years, for which reason the team had to withdraw from the World Cup despite appeals from players.
The basketball ban that ultimately led to the withdrawal was the result of the ongoing war between factions of the Nigerian Basketball Federation, NBBF.
Players’ pleas for the government to lift the ban and let them play in Australia’s flagship tournament fell on deaf ears as nothing was done until the FIBA deadline has passed.
And now Mali who lost the qualifiers to Nigeria will now become the biggest beneficiary of this messy situation.