FIBA Africa 2013 schedule: Senegal vs. Ivory Coast should be fun to watch

Julian Finney

Two of the tournament favorites will face off Thursday when Senegal takes on Ivory Coast in round-robin pool play.

The 2013 FIBA Africa Championship tournament is still in its infant stage. All 16 teams currently participating in round-robin group play advance to next week's knockout tournament, regardless of their records. Thursday's games are still going to be interesting, however, considering seeding implications are in play.

The only can't-miss game on Thursday's schedule features Senegal facing off against Cote d'Ivoire -- or the Ivory Coast, as those of us in America have come to call it. Senegal hasn't won in the matchup since 2001, but both teams are pretty talented and could potentially advance to next year's FIBA World Cup competition.

Senegal narrowly defeated Egypt in their first game of this year's tournament, but they have the size to be very dangerous. Two of their bigs have NBA experience, as Saer Sene was an NBA lottery pick and Hamady Ndiaye played two seasons with the Washington Wizards. Mouhammad Faye and Ibrahima Thomas both have NCAA and NBA Development League experience, and the former led all scorers with 20 points in Tuesday's game.

Ivory Coast isn't quite as stacked when it comes to players who have played stateside, but they're a balanced squad with solid international experience. They're currently ranked by FIBA as the world's 38th best team, right behind Senegal in the standings.

Thursday's entire schedule is included below, converted to Eastern Time for your convenience.

8:30 a.m - Cape Verde (0-1) vs. Central African Republic (0-1)

11 a.m. - Algeria (0-1) vs. Egypt (0-1)

1:30 p.m. - Senegal (1-0) vs. Cote d'Ivoire (1-0)

4 p.m. - Mozambique (1-0) vs. Angola (1-0)

Following Thursday's action, each team will take a break on Friday before wrapping up round-robin play on Saturday.

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