All set for Basketball Africa League Nile Conference

Titus Lual and the Oilers will be fighting to make the playoffs /COURTESY PICTURES

BAL All set for Basketball Africa League Nile Conference

Ndyamuhaki J Emanzi 19:21 - 25.04.2023

The top four teams after the 15-game schedule will join Stade Malien, REG, AS Douanes and Abidjan Basket Club at the BK Arena in Kigali, Rwanda, for the playoffs.

Ugandan champions City Oilers are already in Cairo, Egypt and ready for their opening game of the Basketball Africa League.

The fight for the remaining four places in the BAL Playoffs will see six teams facing off in the Nile Conference, the top four directly booking their spots.

Hosts Al Ahly, Ferroviario da Beira (Mozambique), Cape Town Tigers (South Africa), City Oilers (Uganda), Petro de Luanda (Angola), and Guinea's Seydou Legacy Athletique Club (SLAC) are the six teams fighting for four tickets.

Debutants Al Ahly will face off with Ferroviario da Beira in the only game of the day on Wednesday to set the tone for the tournament.

The top four teams after the 15-game schedule will join Stade Malien, REG, AS Douanes and Abidjan Basket Club at the BK Arena in Kigali, Rwanda, for the playoffs.

City Oilers will start their campaign Angola's Petro de Luanda on Thursday, while Cape Town Tigers have SLAC on the same day.

Who are Oilers' opponents?

Petro de Luanda

Established in 1976, Petro de Luanda is part of a multi-sports club which includes a football and handball team.

Petro is one of the most successful teams in Angola, having won the second most Angolan championships with 16 titles, trailing only Primeiro de Agosto, and sharing the record for most Angolan Cups with 14 cups.

The team has won two continental titles, having won the FIBA African Champions Cup in 2006 and 2015.

The team has been part of the BAL since Season One in 2021. They finished third in the first season and second in Season Two.

Having lost to US Monastir last year, the Angolan side will be out for the ultimate prize this time round.

Ater Majok and Carlos Morais are some of the team's star players.

Al Ahly

Ahly Basketball team was founded in 1930. It is one of the oldest basketball clubs in Egypt and in Africa.

The team played its first ever game against Al Ittihad Alexandria in front of the Egyptian King Farouq in 1937.

Al Ahly won its first Egyptian national championship in the 1988–89 season.

In the 2021–22 season, Ahly won its sixth national title and thus qualified for the 2023 season of the BAL. It will be Al Ahly's debut in the new African competition.

Zamalek represented Egypt in the first two seasons of the BAL. The Egyptian side also won the first season of the competition.

But after missing out twice, Al Ahly are right where they belong.

Corey Webster and South Sudan's Nuni Omot are some of the star players the Egyptian side will rely on.

Cape Town Tigers

On November 26, 2022, the Cape Town Tigers defeated City Oilers in the Road to BAL semi-finals to book their ticket to the 2023 BAL season.

The Tigers are a South African team based in Gauteng. The team is located in the Johannesburg suburb of Sandton but represents the city of Cape Town.

Established in 2019 by three American business partners, the club won the South African national championship in 2021 and 2022.

Zaire Wade and Evans Ganapamo are some of the standout players on the team. Zaire is the eldest child of retired NBA player Dwyane Wade.

Ferroviario da Beira

Ferroviario da Beira is a club from Beira, Mozambique. The team plays in the national Mozambican Basketball League and has won the national championship three times.

In its debut season in the BAL, Beira finished fifth in the Sahara Conference with a 1–4 record and will be looking to progress to the playoffs this time.

Prince Orizu and Will Perry are some of the key players.

Seydou Legacy Athletique Club

SLAC became the first team from Guinea to play in the BAL. With a 2–3 record in the Sahara Conference behind standout guard Chris Crawford, the team qualified for the playoffs.

There, SLAC lost in the quarter-finals to Zamalek from Egypt.