Sala Mejri and Deng Acuoth contest a jump ball at tip-off Credit: FIBA

Defending champions Tunisia are through to the semifinals FIBA AfroBasket 2021.

The North Africans put an end to South Sudan’s incredible run at their debut tournament winning the game 80-65.

Tunisia made sure the usually fast South Sudan play a relatively slow game. The continental newcomers adjusted well, running some good halfcourt sets throughout the game and edged the opening quarter 15-14.

Shooting guard Michael Roll got hot in the second quarter and took charge of the game for Tunisia, netting 11 points and handing out three assists. However, South Sudan never went away with center Deng Acuoth and shooting guard Deng Junior Ring leading the team effort with 6 points and an assist each to go into the halftime break all tied at 40.

Omar Abada opened the third quarter from three-point range and took his turn in leading Tunisia. The point guard netted 11 points and handed out 5 assists as the favourites took a double-digit (63-51) lead into the last period.

Mourad El Mabrouk knocked down a 3-ball and Obada followed it with a dunk off a steal to start the fourth quarter and the game was out of reach for Royal Ivey’s charges.

Omar Abada and Michael Roll took turns in lifting Tunisia over South Sudan Credit: FIBA

Obada and Roll, who took turns in lifting Tunisia, scored 18 and 17 points respectively. The duo also made 8 and 7 assists respectively. Salah Mejri came in handy with a quiet and efficient 20 points. Ben Romdhane had a 13 points and 12 rebounds double-double.

Deng Junior Ring had team-high 14 points for South Sudan, Acuoth added 13 while Mathiang Mauot Muo scores 10 points.

Tunisia will face the winner between Uganda and Cape Verde in the semifinals on Saturday at 4:00pm (EAT).

Franklin Kaweru is the Editor in Chief of Kawowo Sports. He is an ardent basketball enthusiast.

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