Zimbabwe lost to the Central Africa Republic (CAR) in Bamako, Mali 55-79 in the first match of the FIBA Afrobasket 2017 additional qualifier played last night (Friday).

Michael Mokorongo led CAR as they outscored Zimbabwe in yesterday’s match.

Although Zimbabwe enjoyed a 10-point lead early in the contest, CAR kept their best for last to secure an encouraging 24-point victory.

Mokorongo, a two-time FIBA Afrobasket participant, led the way with game-highs 17 points and seven assists while Evaristo Pasipamire sparked with Zimbabwe with 11 points and six rebounds.

The three-team qualifier resume today (Saturday) with Zimbabwe taking on Chad, while CAR return to action (tomorrow) Sunday.

The winner of this qualifier will complete the 16-team FIBA Afrobasket line-up.

So far, teams qualified for the FIBA Afrobasket 2017 include the continental champions Nigeria, Angola, Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal, Mali, Cote d’Ivoire, Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Egypt, Uganda, Mozambique and South Africa.

Both Guinea and Rwanda have been awarded wild cards to compete in the FIBA African basketball showpiece.