D’Tigers forward Al-Farouq Aminu has expressed satisfaction in being an integral part of Nigeria’s male basketball team, playing a pivotal role in the team’s recent success.
Speaking to www.fiba.basketball, the Orlando Magic man revealed that his aim of playing for the D’Tigers is to portray Nigerian Basketball in “good light”.
“I shifted one of my main goals of wanting Nigerian basketball to be held in a good light for a longer time, to have that longevity, and I’m really proud of that. I feel like that goal is being accomplished.”
The 29-year-old power forward joined the D’Tigers squad in 2012 playing in the Olympics qualifying games, helped the team qualify for their first-ever Olympic games.
He also featured in the London games where Nigeria recorded 1 win in 4 games. His first trophy with the D’Tigers was the FIBA AfroBasket 2015 title triumph where Al-Farouq was named in the All-Star Five of the 2015 Afrobasket.
Most recently, he played for Nigeria at the 2019 FIBA Basketball World Cup in China and helped the country as the highest placed African team and also qualify for their third consecutive Olympic games.
Al-Farouq says he is proud to have played for Nigeria in his prime Years and to be part of Nigeria’s glory years.
“I feel really honored (to have been a part of it),” he said. “To see it at a place where it is now, with guys wanting to play for it in the prime of their careers, and coaches wanting to coach, seeing it as an opportunity – I feel what we’ve been able to do the last couple of years, bringing it to a light where we’re playing every year and always qualifying for events, that’s taken Nigerian basketball, and African basketball overall, to a new place.
He also urged players and basketball administrators to provide structures that will nurture young talents and bring in top national team programs, both home and abroad.
“There are some other things we can do for our youth teams,” he said. “A lot of our guys played for the US youth teams, but I want them to see this as an opportunity as well, to be proud to play for the (Nigeria) national team.”
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