Kwara Falcons prepare for BAL with defeat to Stade Malien Bamako.
Nigerian basketball team Kwara Falcons suffered a defeat to Stade Malien Bamako in a friendly game played at the Palais des sports de Treichville.
The Nigerian side put up a strong performance as they continue their preparations for the 2022/23 Basketball Africa League (BAL).
The 2022 Nigeria Premier Basketball League Champions faced off against Stademalien Bamako at the Orange Ball Tournament in Abidjan.
Stade Malien won the first quarter 27-14 and increased their advantage 49-27 to a 22-point lead at the halftime break.
It was a 19-point lead at the end of the third quarter. Kwara Falcons had a late rally but Stade Malien held on to win the game 84-69.
Stade Malien was a massive test for the Kwara Falcons as they are set to face tougher competition at the BAL.
BAL challenge for Kwara Falcons
Kwara Falcons after defeating Nigerian giants Customs to claim the championship and the prestigious BAL ticket their Head Coach Jibril Baba Kadri already stated that he intends to be competitive on the continent.
In an interview with ESPN, he said, "The BAL is a different tournament, it is a higher league, there are more people with vast experience and quality that we are going to face.
"But we are not going to go there just to participate and come back home. This is an opportunity that does not come easy so we want to make it count by making a statement when we get there."
"You don't go into a tournament expecting not to win, even if nobody else expects you to."
The Kwara Falcons will continue their preparation for the BAL with more friendly games in Abidjan.