SYDNEY, Australia (AFP) — Two Mali players apologized after they fought each other during the FIBA Women’s World Cup, with the International Basketball Federation opening an investigation of the incident.
The scuffle erupted in a media zone at the tournament in Sydney on Monday and was caught on camera while Serbia’s Sasa Cado was being interviewed.
Serbia had defeated Mali 81-68.
A short video clip which has since been widely watched online showed Mali’s Salimatou Kourouma throwing at least three punches at teammate Kamite Elisabeth Dabou as a shocked Cado retreated.
Other Mali players shouting “stop” rushed over to intervene and break up the fight.
The two players fronted a press conference after their final tournament game, an 88-65 loss to Canada in which both featured, and apologized.
“We are here to apologize for the image that was on social media, it was not our intention,” Dabou said as they sat side-by-side.
“We were frustrated because of the loss and we’re here to apologize to the whole of the FIBA basketball World Cup. We are sorry.”
They took no questions.
FIBA said was investigating and once concluded “will decide on any applicable disciplinary measures.”