D’Tigress point-guard, Ezinne Kalu believes a place on the medals podium at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is within the realm of possibility for Nigeria’s women’s national basketball team.
Speaking from her base in France, the 2019 FIBA Afrobasket Most Valuable Player told NBBF media that with the right personnel and attitude, the African champions can become the first side from the continent, male or female, to medal at the Olympics.
Kalu who was at the recently concluded 10 days intensive training camp in Atlanta revealed lofty expectations for Africa’s top-ranked team at the Olympics.
“What are my expectations for the girls and the team? It’s just show up. Come to the training ground locked in, be focused, give a hundred per cent and, really, really, buy-in; because the Olympics is a huge platform, a huge stage, and I feel like we could definitely do something special,” she said. Ezinne said.
The skilful point-guard acknowledged that getting amongst the medals in Tokyo would be a tough endeavour requiring the utmost commitment, such as they showed in winning the 2019 Afrobasket and making the quarterfinals at the FIBA Women’s World Cup.
“But in order to do something special, we have to do the work,” she stressed. “We have to do the necessary things to really succeed. Just like how we did for the World Cup and Afro Basket.
“Every camp we have, we know that this is the time for us to get serious, this is the time for us to really put the work in, and I don’t expect anything less from my girls.
“They know the routine: to just come in and put the work in, because we all want to do something special and that’s to make the podium.”
Known for her high work rate on the court, in 2020, Kalu was voted Guard of the Year France (1st Division), 1st Team All-Imports France League, 1st Team All-French Player as well as a member of the Olympic Qualifying Tournament All-Star starting 5 in Serbia.