Five national teams will be competing for the FIBA U16 Women’s Championship 2017 title in Beira, Mozambique.
Angola, Egypt, hosts Mozambique, Mali and Zimbabwe will, from August 5-12, do battle for the two tickets on offer for African nations for the FIBA U17 Women’s Basketball World Cup 2018 in Minsk, Belarus.
In a rematch of the 2013 Final, reigning champions Mali will go up against Egypt in Saturday’s opener (Today). Later in the day, Mozambique will face tournament debutant Zimbabwe.
Angola will begin their FIBA U16 Women’s Championship 2017 campaign facing Mozambique on Sunday, August 6.
The Group Phase will be played in a round-robin format. And the top four teams will advance to the Final Phase which will be played in a knockout format (Semi-Finals and Final).
The Third-Place Game and the Final will be played on the last day of the tournament (August 12).
Following the unprecedented number of withdrawals, this is the first time in the history of the 12-team competition launched in 2009 that only five national teams will take part in the event.
The reasons for the withdrawals vary from country to country, local federations argue.
Despite the short number of participating teams, one question becomes inevitable: Which two African teams will qualify for the FIBA U17 Women’s Basketball World Cup 2018?
At first glance, Mali – the number one Africa team in the NIKE FIBA World Ranking Girls who have won the last three editions of the competition- and Egypt emerge as favourites.
However, they will need to deny emerging powers Angola and try to overcome Mozambique’s home court advantage.
Mozambique will host the tournament which they last hosted in 2013 when they claimed a 3rd place finish.