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May 21, 2022

Zamalek look to extend BAL winning streak in game against SLAC

Seydou Legacy Athétique Club (SLAC) will try to become the first team to stop Zamalek’s Basketball Africa League (BAL) unbeaten run-on Sunday, May 22 in the last of four 2022 BAL Quarter-Finals.

For SLAC, this a tall task, considering how solid the BAL defending champions have been.

Zamalek currently enjoy a 11-0 record dating back to last year’s BAL. It’s the only team that has never tasted defeat in the history of the competition so far.

Despite all that, SLAC remain upbeat about their chances.

SLAC head coach Zeljko Zecevic was first to voice his team’s ambitions in the BAL Finals. “We are going to Kigali to compete, no matter who we face,” he said recently in a chat with the

This could have been described as David and Goliath clash, however, coaches, players and officials tend to agree that no team should be underestimated such is the competitiveness level of the BAL Finals.

This game is the first clash between SLAC and Zamalek.


While Zamalek clinched the first BAL title last year in Kigali, SLAC are debuting in a major continental competition.

The reigning BAL champions, who qualified automatically to this season, cruised to a 5-0 record in the Nile Conference last month in Cairo. Zamalek remain the only undefeated team in the 2022 BAL season.

SLAC qualified to the BAL through one of the FIBA-run Road to BAL qualifiers late last year. They won two out of five games in the Sahara Conference in March in Dakar.

Unlike Zamalek who topped the Nile Conference, SLAC finished fourth to clinch the last Sahara Conference spot for the BAL playoffs.


A quick look into the teams’ squads, and it becomes clear that no team in post-season made more adjustments than SLAC.

The Conakry-based brought four new players. They are Guineans Bachir Bella Diallo, Oumar Barry, Sory Doumbouya and American Malcolm Griffin.

Marcus Crawford, the second leading scorer in the BAL regular season with an average of 21 points per game, and Chris Obekpa are SLAC’s biggest absences in Kigali.

DAKAR, SENEGAL - MARCH 5: Christopher Ewaoche Obekpa #4 and Marcus Christopher Crawford #2 of the Seydou Legacy Athlétique Club talk during the game against the Dakar Université Club on March 5, 2022 at the Dakar Arena. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, user is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2022 NBAE (Photo by Juilen Bacot/NBAE via Getty Images)

To cover for the sharpshooter Crawford, SLAC brought in Griffin, a shooting guard who last played for PAOK Thessaloniki from Greece’s topflight.

Meanwhile, Zamalek re-signed former NBA Academy standout Mohab Abdellatif, who spent the past season with the East Tennessee State University.


Edgar Sosa has been the heart and soul of Zamalek during the Nile Conference. 

The Dominican Republic international player paced the White Knights’ offence with a team-high of 19.5 points per game while contributing at least three 3-pointers per game.

Backing Sosa’s scoring prowess are Nigerian international player Ike Diogu and Egypt’s Anas Mahmoud.

Seven-footer Mahmoud currently averages a tournament-high of 71.4 percent in 2-point shooting.

Dane Miller Jr. was one of the reasons SLAC qualified to the BAL, and the American small forward remains an all-around piece for Zecevic’s team.

In the regular season, Miller Jr. averaged 15.4 points and a team-high of six assists per game.


With an average of 88 points per game, Zamalek comes second in points scored per game after AS Salé (90) while the Guinean champions have scored fewer points (78) per game.

But it’s in the paint and shooting that Zamalek and SLAC look similar with each taking 40 rebounds per game. Zamalek registered a Field-Goal percentage of 46 compared to SLAC’s 44.

Similarities aside, Zamalek recorded more assists (24) per contest compared to SLAC’s 16.  


SLAC’s Chris Obekpa has recently stated that being underdogs has been their secret weapon in the BAL, and that’s what motivates them to the clash against Zamalek.

Zamalek are favourites to come up victorious. 


“To be a champion you have to overcome anything.” – Zamalek center - Anas Mahmoud.

“We want to win every time we take to the floor. It’s less about trying to get matched up with SLAC, it’s more about, we don’t want to lose.” – Will Voigt – Zamalek head coach.