D’Tigers won their first match in Group A by beating Tunisia 60-56 in a tough duel at the Olympic stadium.
Alade Aminu scored 15 points and grabbed nine rebounds while Ike Diogu added 13 points and 10 rebounds as Nigeria just beat Tunisia 60-56 in the opening game of the Olympic men's basketball tournament.
Al-Farouq Aminu, who played for the NBA New Orleans Hornets last season, added 10 points and nine rebounds for the Nigerians, who have not lost to reigning African champion Tunisia in international competition since 1987.
The two African sides in the London line-up were both making their Olympic debuts in the Group A round-robin contest. The top four teams in each of two groups advance to the medal playoffs.
Nigeria were the last team to qualify for the Olympics, having beaten the Dominican Republic in the qualifying tournament decider to advance after upsetting Greece earlier in that event.
Only three Nigerian players were born in the African nation. The others, including former NBA San Antonio Spur Diogu, were born in the United States but are of Nigerian heritage.
Tunisian captain Amine Rzig scored 18 points in a losing cause.
The Nigerians seized their largest lead at 29-10 on the way to a 31-15 half-time advantage before Tunisia rallied, scoring 25 points in the fourth quarter and pulling within 56-54 in the final seconds on a Mourad El Mabrouk three-pointer.
Nigeria sank three free throws down the stretch to secure the victory.
Nigeria Tunisia 2 Points 18 /47 (38%) 2 Points 15 /34 (44%) 3 Points 2 /13 (15%) 3 Points 8 /23 (35%) Free Throws 18 /31 (58%) Free Throws 2 /5 (40%) Assists 9 Assists 15 Offensive Rebounds 20 Offensive Rebounds 12 Defensive Rebounds 22 Def. Rebounds 27 Steals 11 Steals 2 Blocked shots 3 Blocked shots 4 Turnovers 13 Turnovers 21 Fouls 17 Fouls 25 Fouls drawn 25 Fouls drawn 17 Points from Turnover 23 Points from Turnover 6 Points in Paint 34 Points in Paint 22 Second Chance 12 Second Chance 4 Fast Break 8 Fast Break 14 Biggest Lead 19 Biggest Lead 0 Biggest Scoring Run 11-0 (29-10) Biggest Scoring Run 9-0 (45-40)
Pictures from the game
Nigeria's Alade Aminu (C) is challenged by Tunisia's Marouan Kechrid (front) and Tunisia's Mehdi Hafsi during their men's Group A basketball match
Nigeria's Chamberlain Oguchi (C) drives to the basket against Tunisia's Salah Mejri (L), Makram Ben Romdhane (front) and Mohamed Hadidane (obscure)
Tony Skinn (L) drives to the basket against Tunisia
Alade Aminu (R) dunks against Tunisia's Mokhtar Ghayaza