Diogu Eyes Retirement After 2021 Afrobasket

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 06: (EDITORS NOTE: A polarizing filter was used for this image.) Ike Diogu of Nigeria drives for a shot attempt in the second half against France during the Men's Basketball Preliminary Round match on Day 10 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the Basketball Arena on August 6, 2012 in London, England. France won 79-73. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

By Sampson Adedeji

Captain of the Senior Men’s National Team, Ike Diogu has revealed that he is closer to the end of his journey with the D’Tigers team than ever before.

In a chat with NBBF Media, the 2017 Afrobasket Most Valuable Player while reminiscing on his journey which started in 2012 said it has been an unbelievable voyage.

Although with no definite time frame to call time on his career, the former Golden State Warriors player said he will re-evaluate his options after the 2021 Afrobasket finals in Rwanda.

“I don’t have any time frame right now. Hopefully, I can play for another two years and see what happens. Let us see how the body is and how everything goes. I am closer to the end than the beginning but it has been an unbelievable ride. It has been an honour serving my country.”

Reminiscing on his career, Diogu who was part of the D’Tigers team to the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympic Games wished he played with the likes of Julius Nwosu and Tunji Awojobi who inspired him to play for Nigeria.

“I wish I could start earlier and play with the likes of Julius Nwosu, Tunji Awojobi, Imeh Udoka because those were the people I looked up to.”

One of the longest serving captains of the D’Tigers said he is not scared of calling it quit whenever his body tells him to because it has been a ‘mission accomplished’.

“I am not scared because it is mission accomplished. The national team is a brand now. I did everything I was supposed to do in the national team, raised the awareness to the ultimate level.”

“People know about the team now. I get different messages from young Nigerian athletes asking how they can be a part of the national team and that has been my ultimate goal. So there is nothing to be scared of”, Diogu concluded.

Diogu was part of the 2015 FIBA Afrobasket gold medal winning team before returning two years to win silver under Coach Alex Nwora in Tunisia.


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