Basketball’s world governing body has launched an investigation after a fight broke out between players from Mali at the Women’s World Cup in Australia.
A squad member attacked a team-mate in the mixed zone, where reporters interview players, after their 81-68 loss to Serbia on Monday.
This result eliminated Mali from the tournament after their fourth defeat.
As other people intervened to break up the fight, the incident was filmed by Serbian television.
In a statement, Fiba said: “Following this incident, Fiba has opened an investigation. Upon completion of the investigation, Fiba has decided on any applicable disciplinary action.”
Serbian Sasa Cado, who was being interviewed at the time, looked visibly shocked, stepping back as Salimatou Kourouma threw at least three punches at Elisabeth Dabou.
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The Sydney tournament was extremely frustrating for the Malians, who are one of two teams in the 12-team final who have yet to win a game, after defeats to Japan, Australia and France.
Mali are only taking part in the tournament after African champions Nigeria, who beat their West African compatriots in last year’s Women’s Afrobasket, were withdrawn from the tournament by their government due to problems. related to Nigerian basketball.
Malian basketball has also faced considerable challenges of late, with a report in 2021 describing “decades” of sexual abuse in the country’s women’s sport.
The report was commissioned by Fiba, which exonerated its president – Malian Hamane Niang – of having disadvantaged such abuses while leading the Malian basketball federation between 1999 and 2007.