Gombe Bulls Skipper Yakubu Istafanus blamed the dismal performance by his team at the FIBA African Champions Cup on inexperience.
In an interview with ACL Sports the small forward recounted his experience at the championship, he said “My experience in Tunisia was quite enjoyable because I had played for other clubs like Kano Pillars and Nigeria Customs unlike most of my teammates who were just playing for the first time on the continent which was our biggest challenge”
Gombe Bulls were in Group B alongside Congo’s ASB Mazembe, Mozambique’s Ferroviario da Beira, Groupement Sportif des Petroliers of Algeria, Angola’s Sport Libolo E Benfica and Union Sportive Monastir of Tunisia.
Gombe Bulls finished bottom of the group, in the group stage they won just once and lost four times.
In the classification round, they lost to local rivals Kano Pillars but finished 11th after they defeated ASB New Generation of Congo.
Istafanus blames the performance of Nigerian basketball teams on the continent to inexperience as both Nigerian representatives finished below the top five, Gombe bulls (11th) and kano pillars (9th).
He said “The level of our own league can’t be compared to theirs. They have an improved level of Basketball and that's why they are better than us. For Gombe Bulls, we didn’t boost our squad with an American player like Pillars did. The American ( Jimmy Williams) that was brought for Pillars joined them late in Tunisia but the little time he played, there was a big difference in the team.”
The Gombe Bulls captain scored an average of 12 points per game in the competition and has been invited to the national team camp in preparation for the Commonwealth Games.