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An Africa select side will play against World select side in a high-profile friendly in August next year, Senior Director, NBA Africa, John Manyo Plange has revealed.

The crack team of African stars currently playing in the NBA and elsewhere will play against their counterpart from the world in an explosive exhibition game in Johannesburg, South Africa.

While not as prolific in producing NBA players Africa has produced its share of superstars—Nigeria’s Hakeem Olajuwan, the Democratic Republic of Congo’s Dikembe Mutombo, and more.

This season is no different, featuring an exciting batch of elite players, young upstarts, and veterans from the continent taking to the courts are being counted among the emerging talents in the NBA.

Speaking on a popular Ghanaian TV station TV3 on Fast Break last Sunday, Senior Director for NBA Africa, John Manyo Plange revealed plans are far advanced for the historic friendly to take place in South Africa next year.

“Plans are far advanced for Team Africa to play Team World in an explosive contest in Johannesburg game next year,” he told host Yaw Sakyi Afari on TV3

“I don’t want to get ahead of myself but I believe it’s going to be an eye-opener and exciting game for Africa especially.

“We’re determined to bring the game to the doorstep of our people and the decision to play Team World will be the starting point.”

He added: “Already NBA Africa have been involved in the development of the game at the grassroot and will use such high profile games to promote the game more on the continent.

“Basketball is gaining massive popularity in Africa now and that’s evident of the number of players who are being drafted into the NBA.

Exactly three decades ago, the first African player Hakeem Abdul Olajuwon from Nigeria was selected as the No 1 NBA draft pick by the Houston Rockets.

He went on to win back-to-back championships with the Rockets in 1994 and 1995 and is the only player in NBA history to have won NBA MVP, Defensive player of the year and NBA Finals MVP.

Inducted in the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2008, Olajuwon has since paved the way for several legends like Manute Bol (South Sudan), Mutombo Dikembe (Congo), Luol Deng (South Sudan) and Serge Ibaka (Congo) who have created a huge presence in the league.


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