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’Tana Aiyejina

Former champions Dolphins have qualified for the final of the Final Six of the 2018 Zenith Bank Basketball Women’s League after beating debutants Mountain of Fire and Miracles 57-44 at the National Stadium, Lagos on Tuesday.

They will battle champions First Bank, who defeated Nigeria Customs 73-44 in the final on Wednesday (today).



Newly-formed MFM have enjoyed a fairytale run and were the first club to qualify for the semi-finals after beating favourites Nigeria Customs 56-49 on Monday. They battled Dolphins in a grudge semi-final encounter after losing to the 2015 winners in the conference phase of the competition in Enugu.

But Dolphins once again showed the stuff they are made of with a classic performance to prove the better of the Lagos-based sides with a 13-point victory.

Dolphins captain Bintu Bhadmus said they had an easy game against MFM but admitted that they would face stiff opposition from the Elephant Girls in the final game.

“MFM have a very young side but we didn’t underrate them despite beating them in the conference phase. Against First Bank in the final, it will be different but we will approach the game like every other game. It’s definitely not going to be easy but we pray victory comes our way,” Bhadmus stated.

In the classification match on Tuesday, Kaduna Angels defeated Plateau Rocks 68-51. With the result, Angels finished fifth in the Final Six while Plateau Rocks are sixth.

MFM will play Nigeria Customs in the third/fourth place classification game before today’s final.

The Group Managing Director of Zenith Bank, Peter Amangbo, is expected to attend the closing ceremony along with other top dignitaries of the sponsors while the Nigeria Basketball Federation led by Musa Ahamdu-Kida will also be out to witness the final of the competition.

“We are proud of the progress recorded over the years by Nigerian women in basketball because many of those who made it happen for the country at continental and global levels are products of this competition,” Amangbo said.



The winners of the tournament will go away with a cash prize of N1m, second place will get N500,000 while the third-place side will go home with N250,000.

The winners and runners-up will represent Nigeria at the FIBA Zone 3 Women Champions qualifiers in Cotonou, Benin Republic, from November 12 to 15.

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