TRIPOLI - Morocco have lodged an official complaint about two Rwandan players; Robert Thomson and Mathieu Miller.
Prior to the two sides’ Afrobasket opener on Wednesday night, there was a fracas after the North Africans made ambiguous claims that Thomson and Miller were mercenaries.
The game was delayed for about 10 minutes as Fiba-Africa tried to sort out the issue. Sources close to the body yesterday revealed that they have promised to look into the issue.
According to the Morocco camp, the pair is not certified to play for Rwanda but the Rwandan camp found the claims inconceivable since the pair competed for Rwanda at the previous competition which was staged in Angola.
“It is ridiculous. I hope they are not trying to distract us from the game,” one Ferwaba (local basketball federation) official said.
Meanwhile, one of Rwanda’s top players Bradley Cameron is struggling to shake off a knee injury. The small forward, also one of the team’s best defensive players suffered the injury during the Morocco game.
“I’m still limping a little but hopefully, I will be fine over the next two days. I need to be out there playing hard for the team,” Cameron said.
Just when Rwanda thought they had finished off the job, Morocco scored five points in 20 seconds to snatch a dubious victory on Day one.
The Moroccans came out 85-84 winners.
Meanwhile, Contrary to previous editions, the format for this year’s Afrobasket competition has changed.
The top three from each of the four groups will progress into the next round as opposed to the top two qualifying directly into the quarter-finals.
In the next round, twelve teams will battle it out after which the top eight will then proceed to the quarter-finals which start next Wednesday.
Like previous years, 16 countries are in contest. Angola could have won the last five events but they know it will take more guts for them to bag a sixth successive title.
From the latest games, Nigeria, Senegal and Cameroon have been tipped to give the Angolans a good run for their money. By press time, Angola, Senegal, Cameroon and Nigeria were still unbeaten.