Rivers Hoopers have been drawn against northern sides in the inaugural edition of the FIBA Africa Basketball League (FIBA ABL).
16 teams across Africa took part in the draws held at the Hotel Pullman, Abidjan on Saturday.
Rivers Hoopers were drawn in Group A alongside defending champions of the continent, AS Sale of Morocco, JS Kairouan (Tunisia) and S.L.A.C (Guinea).
Nigeria’s other representative, Civil Defenders will also be facing another northern opponent ES Rades of Tunisia, Zone 3 bronze winners, Elan Sportif (Benin) and BC Terreur (DR Congo).
The games will be played in a round robin format from February 8 – March 10 across different African cities. Window 1 will be played between February 8-10, Window 2 (February 15-17), Window 3 (March 1-3) while Window 4 will hold from March 8-10.
Top 2 teams from each group will advance to the elite 8, where clubs will be divided into 4 groups of 2 teams each played from March 22-April 14 in a home and away format.
The winners of the four groups will advance to the finals to be played from May 3-5.
Reacting to the draws, Rivers Hooper’s head coach, Ogoh Odaudu admitted that they have their work cut out as they hope to pick one of the two slots from their group.
“It’s not an easy group we have the defending champions and another northern side from Tunisia. It’s not easy playing against these northern sides. We are going to put our act together and grab one of the slots from that group,” said Odaudu.
Group A: AS Sale (Morocco), Rivers Hoopers (Nigeria), JS Kairouan (Tunisia) and S.L.A.C (Guinea)
Group B: ES Rades (Tunisia), Civil Defenders (Nigeria), Elan Sportif (Benin), BC Terreur (DR Congo)
Group C: Al Ahly (Egypt), Primeiro De Agosto (Angola) and Ferroviaro Beira (Mozambique) and R.E.G BBC (Rwanda)
Group D: Petro de Luanda (Angola), Smouha (Egypt), ASB Mazembe (DR Congo) and C.O.S.P.N (Madagascar)