News / Africa

    Nigeria, Tunisia Tip Off London Olympic Men's Basketball

    Tunisia's Makram Ben Romdhane (12) is defended by Nigeria's Koko Archibong (10) during the first half of a preliminary men's basketball game at the 2012 Summer Olympics, London, July 29, 2012.Tunisia's Makram Ben Romdhane (12) is defended by Nigeria's Koko Archibong (10) during the first half of a preliminary men's basketball game at the 2012 Summer Olympics, London, July 29, 2012.
    x
    Tunisia's Makram Ben Romdhane (12) is defended by Nigeria's Koko Archibong (10) during the first half of a preliminary men's basketball game at the 2012 Summer Olympics, London, July 29, 2012.
    Tunisia's Makram Ben Romdhane (12) is defended by Nigeria's Koko Archibong (10) during the first half of a preliminary men's basketball game at the 2012 Summer Olympics, London, July 29, 2012.
    Sonny Young
    LONDON — In the opening game of Olympic men's basketball competition, Nigeria edged African rival Tunisia Sunday, 60-56.

    Both African teams were making their debuts in Olympic men's basketball. It looked like Nigeria, faster, stronger and quicker to the ball, was headed for an easy victory over Tunisia. "D'Tigers" of Nigeria led by as many as 19 points in the first half and took a 31-15 lead into the break.

    But the Tunisians, the reigning African champions, rallied in the second half.  

    Led by captain Amine Rzig, who had a game-high 18 points, the Tunisians closed the gap to two points late in the game.

    Nigeria's Al-Farouq Aminu, who plays for the NBA's New Orleans Hornets club, made some key free throws at the end of the game to clinch the victory.  

    He tallied 10 points and nine rebounds, while his older brother, 24-year-old Alade, had a team-high 15 points and nine rebounds.

    Alade Aminu told VOA it was thrilling to be a part of Nigeria's first ever Olympic victory in men's basketball.
     
    “History in the making right here," said Alade Aminu. "I feel like a living legend. I mean it is history of the Olympics, not having been here before. Everything we do is history from here on out. It is just a beautiful feeling. All my heritage and all my roots are in Nigeria, back home in Africa.  I know 120-million people back home are really happy.  We put Nigeria and basketball also on the map."

    Alade Aminu also said the Tunisians showed a lot of fighting spirit with their second-half comeback.
     
    “You gotta give Tunisia a lot of credit," he said. "They showed a lot of resilience. They could have folded. They could have said, 'OK, this is a better team.'  But they showed a lot of fight. So give a lot of credit to Tunisia. It is our job to try to make it look easy, but it was not easy. I mean they showed a lot of heart right there at the end. But luckily, we had a little grit and a little grind at the end to be able to pull it out."
     
    The Aminu brothers were born in the United States to Nigerian parents.  They are part of a Nigerian Olympic team dominated by players with both Nigeria and U.S. citizenship.

    In preliminary round action Tuesday, Nigeria will play Lithuania and Tunisia will take on the gold-medal favorite United States.

    A crowd of almost 7,000 attended the Nigeria-Tunisia game at the Olympic Park Basketball Arena, one of the largest temporary venues ever built for an Olympics. The 12-team Olympic men's basketball tournament will culminate August 12th with the gold medal game.

    You May Like

    Syrian Torture Victim Recounts Horrors

    'You make them think you have surrendered' says Jalal Nofal, a doctor who was jailed and survived repeated interrogations in Syria

    Mandela’s Millions Paid to Heirs, But Who Gets His Country Home?

    Saga around $3 million estate of country's first democratic president is far from over as Winnie Mandela’s fight for home overshadows payouts

    Guess Which Beach is 'Best in the US'?

    Hawaii’s Hanauma Bay tops an annual "top 10" list compiled by a coastal scientist, also known as Doctor Beach

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora