|Host City: Kayseri|
|Host City: Istanbul|
|Host City: Ankara|
|5. Puerto Rico||1/4||6|
|6. Cote d'Ivoire||1/4||6|
|Host City: Izmir|
|3. New Zealand||3/2||8|
|#||Name||P||Height||DOB||Place Of Birth||Club|
|04/11/1989||Cocody, Cote d'Ivoire||Brigham Young University, NCAA (USA)|
|21/07/1987||Cocody, Cote d'Ivoire||Chorale de Roanne Basket, LNB (FRA)|
|31/10/1988||Paris, France||Strasbourg, LNB (FRA)|
|27/02/1985||Maisons-Laffitte, France||Chorale Roanne, LNB (FRA)|
|23/08/1980||Bouake, Cote d'Ivoire||BC Abidjan (CIV)|
|22/01/1981||Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire||Sporting Beirut, Div A (LIB)|
|20/04/1982||Cocody, Cote d'Ivoire||Lausanne, LNBA (SWI)|
|03/06/1983||Koumassi, Cote d'Ivoire||San Martin Corrientes, LNB (ARG)|
|18/10/1985||Boston, USA||Phoenix Hagen, BBL (GER)|
|25/10/1981||Abobo, Cote d'Ivoire||Rodez, LNB (FRA)|
|26/12/1988||Agboville, Cote d'Ivoire||Midlands College, NJCAA (USA)|
|24/03/1981||Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire||Erdemir, TBL (TUR)|
|Min||Minutes played||Tot||Total rebounds||BS||Block Shots|
|%||Shooting percentage||PF||Personal fouls||G||Played Games|
New improved ‘Elephants’ relish long awaited return to the big stage
1986 was the last time that Ivory Coast took part in World Basketball’s biggest event and after being the surprise package of last year’s FIBA Africa Championship, the Elephants will once again be looking to play on their status as massive underdogs.
Last time Ivory Coast made it to the FIBA World Championship, some of the current players were not even born while others were just babies. It was in 1986 in Spain and the competition was somewhat painful for the 1985 FIBA Africa champions. They had to face tough opposition to say the least, with powerhouses like reigning European champions USSR and the 1983 European Championship winners Italy, plus solid international squads like Germany, China and Puerto Rico. A proud Ivory Coast lost all five games but certainly gained a lot of experience in the process and also the hunger for another trip to the Worlds
Last summer at the FIBA Africa Championship, reaching that goal was nothing more than just a dream after the first two rounds of the competition. An inexperienced Ivory Coast, that had been put through a number of problems preparing themselves for the tournament, faced a huge challenge in the quarter-finals against Senegal, a five-time FIBA Africa Championship winner and a bursting with top-notch players from the best leagues in Europe and the NBA.
However Randoald Dessarzin’s Elephants went past Senegal (84-78) before proving their quarter-final victory has been no fluke, overcoming Cameroon in the semi-finals (82-72). Unfortunately for their fans and many neutrals, Ivory Coast came up just short against an invincible Angola en route to a sixth straight FIBA Africa Championship coronation.
While the Ivory Coast players deserve much credit for their recent improvement, so does the management and the federation. Indeed, in order to strengthen their squad, Coach Dessarzin and the Ivorian Federation quickly considered suggesting some experimented players to make their debuts for the team.
The best example of that strategy was Alain Digbeu. Although he was born in France, the French guard (1.95m, 34) has Ivorian origins and would have added heaps of professionalism and quality to the team. Alain participated in three European Championships with France (1999, 2001 and 2003) and wore prestigious jerseys during his brilliant career (FC Barcelona and Real Madrid, for instance). But Digbeu, like other European pros (Hervé Touré and Jean-Marc Kraidy) finally did not make the team, as coach Dessarzin thought it was a good idea to reward those who offered their heart and body for the nation last year at the FIBA Africa Championship.
Among them, Pape-Philippe Amagou and his sidekick from the French club of Roanne Souleyman Diabaté, who combine to form a more than decent back-court at the world stage. Then, Dessarzin has to work on his frontline, which has been a concern at the Africa Championship, in spite of center Mohamed Koné’s enormous talent.
Like in 1986, the ‘Elephants’ will again meet China and Puerto Rico, as well as Russia - part of USSR at the time. The game against China on Day 2 will certainly be a key moment for the African silver medallists, while the most emotional moment will certainly come on the first day when Turkey will open ‘their’ World Championship against them.
|2009||FIBA Africa Championship for Men||2nd|
|1996||African Championship for Men '22 and Under'||3rd|
|1985||African Championship for Men||1st|
|1981||African Championship for Men||1st|
|1980||African Championship for Men||2nd|
|1978||African Championship for Men||2nd|
|11||Brice Kevin Assie||PF|
|13||Didier Eric Tape|
Head Coach: Randoald DESSARZIN