Nigeria’s men’s basketball team, D’Tigers have cried out over the non-availability of funds for their FIBA Basketball World Cup preparation.
The tournament is set to kick-off in China starting August 31st, and the team is yet to receive funds to prepare .
D’Tigers forward, Stan Okoye accused the Nigerian Sports Commission of refusing to release the money allocated to them for training, travel, and food with just two weeks to the 2019 FIBAWC.
Speaking via his official twitter handle @StanOkoye_ he said, “I hate to do this, but as me and my teammates have been preparing for the upcoming World Cup we have faced a lot of adversity. As players, coaches, and staff we try to focus on the basketball side of things and avoid the politics.”
Okoye continued, “I say all of that to say that the Sports Commission of Nigeria hasn’t released the funds held for us to lodge, travel, etc. Of course we will manage, show up to China, and fight for this country, but something has to change!
D’Tigers Ekpe Udoh also took to his Twitter page to call for the release of funds to aid the team to prepare for the World Cup tournament.
“Dear Sports World, with two weeks before the FIBAWC, the Nigerian Sports Commission refuses to release the money allocated to us for training, travel, and food! We have a special team and possibly the best yet. I hope this gets resolved soon,” said Udoh.
Another member of the D’Tigers, Chimezie Metu also made his complaints on his page.
“It has been an honour and privilege to play and represent Nigeria in preparation for the FIBA World Cup. However, the sports commission of Nigeria refuses to release the money allocated to us for training, food, travel, and equipment in order to properly prepare for the World Cup. It made things very difficult as the President of the Federation, coaching staff, and even players have had to pay for everything personally. Hopefully, this issue can be resolved among the higher authorities as my teammates and I look forward to continuing our preparation and goal of reaching the podium at the 2019 FIBA World Cup.”
Back in July, the home-based D’Tigers had to travel by road to Mali for the inaugural edition of the FIBA AfroCan. In another separate issue, D’Tigress also had to delay their departure for the FIBA Women’s Afrobasket 2019 in Senegal by two days due to financial challenges.