Player of the Basket Lattes Montpellier Association (BLMA), which plays in the women’s first division, the French international of 3×3… and 5×5, has also created its own academy to allow young people from working-class backgrounds to make a career. Like her.
“Last year a lot of girls liked to have the ball. Today, I have it a little more, and it works…“Mamignan Touré, alias” cute “, the nickname she likes to wear, is all smiles at the Palais des Sports de Lattes. The day before, Wednesday October 16, she scored 15 points, delivered 4 assists and took 3 rebounds during the success of BLMA against the Czechs of Zabiny Brno (84-72). Enough to allow the Héraultaises to qualify for the Eurocup play-offs and continue their start to the season on a faultless basis, with a ninth victory in as many games.
At the head of the Women’s League, tied with Bourges and Lyon, will it be possible for BLMA to keep up the pace in both competitions? “It’s not easy to chain several matches in the week. There is no pressure, just a responsibility, because we want to win everywhere, she says, all dressed in black. I try to be irreproachable in recovery. The group is balanced, but small, and a single injury could handicap us.»
“I was already playing with my sisters”
Aged 27, Mamignan Touré knows only too well the sacrifices to be made to reach the highest level and stay there. She was raised alone by her mother – “an exemplary, valiant woman, I am nothing compared to– in a family of five children, where his older brother Mohamed served as a mentor. The native of Nevers, in the popular Courlis district, fell in love with basketball thanks to her family. “I wasn’t even old enough to be there when I was already playing with my sisters, she remembers, in a cheerful voice. There were posters of Allen Iverson, Kobe Bryant or Michael Jordan all over their room. The base what (smile).»
After starting out at the local club, the Entente Basket Fourchambault Nevers (EBFN), Mamignan Touré rose through the ranks by joining the departmental and regional teams, then the hope center at INSEP. His professional career began in the North, in Arras, before more or less successful passages in Trégor, Lyon, Nice, in the Landes or even in Belgium. It is finally in Montpellier where she has found, since 2020, a certain stability.
Les Bleues, a double adventure
In Occitan lands, Mamignan Touré continues to gain momentum, especially in 3×3, a discipline which is practiced on half-courts and in which she was elected world number 1 in the FIBA ranking in 2021 after having participated with the French team in the Olympic Games. , in Tokyo. “An incredible although bitter experience, because we finished fourth, at the foot of the podium and therefore of a medal, she regrets. Jcame out stronger.»
On the strength of her good performances in the selection and in the club, the back was called up for the French 5×5 team for the first time in November 2021. After participating in the qualifications for the World Cup, she learned that she was not selected. in the final group that will compete in the competition.
“At the time, I took it really badly, because I was irreproachable in the game or the state of mind. I could only suffer this decision and try to accept it.“Except that an unforeseen event changes the situation. “I was already looking at the plane ticket to go see my big sister in Dakar, when I learned of the injury of Marine Johannès, during a preparation match against the United States, she explains. Jean-Aimé Toupane, our trainer, calls me. He offers me to rejoin the group. The question did not even arise for me (smile).»
model of success
Despite an elimination in the quarter-finals of the World Cup against China (85-71), Mamignan Touré did not procrastinate for long. It’s in his nature. Humble and determined, the young woman, who holds a degree in physical education and sports, devotes a large part of her time to “Lokosso Academy“. Hers. But why “Lokosso»? “This is the nickname given to me by Mohamed, my older brother. It means, in Lingala (Congolese dialect, Editor’s note), a person who likes to eat well (laughs). I have always kept it.»
His ties to his country of origin, Mali, and more generally to Africa, are very strong. “I want to give small Migna, who have not necessarily had the necessary cultural and economic capital, the possibility of achieving their dream.she explains. One day, one of my students said to me: ‘this is the first time that I have a black teacher. You cannot know how proud I am. You give me a lot of courage and strength. This reinforced me in my role.»
And to conclude by bursting into tears at the mention of Abraham, a young player recently deceased whom she had met in Abidjan and was to be part of the NBA Basketball without borders program. “He gave me the greatest lesson of my life. With nothing, he and the others in the country are able to achieve great things. Give them a thousandth of an opportunity and they will go far. This is what I want to build.»