The Australian Boomers have named a full team of NBL players for the FIBA Asia Cup to be contested in Lebanon next month.
The team was announced today following a camp on the Gold Coast which trimmed the initial 20-man team down to a final 12 who will be in Lebanon to compete from August 8-20 against the powerhouses of the Asian region for the first time.
All NBL Clubs feature in the final team that includes Olympians David Andersen and Brad Newley, with the likes of Kevin Lisch, Nathan Sobey and Chris Goulding all ruled out due to injury concerns.
As a result, for coach Andrej Lemanis the Asia Cup presents an opportunity for young players to get Boomers experience.
“It is a great opportunity for the first-timers to get that international experience with the Boomers which will serve us well as we progress through the qualification process,” said Lemanis.
“I’ve been so impressed and humbled with the attitude that everyone came into camp with. I know how much it means to them to be in a Boomers environment and every time you are around them, it reminds you just how lucky we are to be involved in a wonderful program with wonderful people.”
While the team of 12 selected will represent Australia at the Asia Cup, the wider group of players including those who were injured will be in contention to be selected for the World Cup qualifiers in November.
“Part of this camp’s purpose was to set the scene for the next 18 months or so through the first set of qualifiers,” explained Lemanis.
“We wanted to continue to build with the broader group and establish the team’s trademarks as well as offensive and defensive understandings.
“To that end, some players who were injured still gave up their time to be connected to the program. It was pleasing to see those who were a part of the Olympic campaign continue to stay engaged and give to the group.
“Even when they weren’t able to contribute on court due to injury, they continued to give to the group by communicating and sharing their knowledge, which is a really positive sign moving forward.
“The NBL clubs have been very supportive including allowing injured players to come into camp and trusting us to do the right thing with those guys.
Those players unable to play due to injury still attended the camp on the Gold Coast however they won’t be travelling to Beirut with the final team.
This Boomers team will see a number of players suiting up for Australia in senior competition for the first time however many have history in the program as members of the Emerging Boomers as well as the World University games.
Players will remain in camp before heading to Lebanon on August 2 for a series of practices and a lead-in game before their first game against Japan on August 8.
Boomers Schedule for FIBA Asia Cup (times in AEST):
August 8 – Australia vs Japan @ 11:00pm
August 10 – Australia vs Hong Kong @ 11:00pm
August 12 – Australia vs Chinese Taipei @ 11:00pm
August 17 – Quarter-Finals
August 19 – Semi-Finals
August 20 – Bronze and Gold medal games
Final Australian Boomers team for FIBA Asia Cup:
David Andersen – Melbourne United
Todd Blanchfield – Sydney Kings
Angus Brandt – Perth Wildcats
Jason Cadee – Sydney Kings
Mitch Creek – Adelaide 36ers
Cam Gliddon – Cairns Taipans
Matt Hodgson – Adelaide 36ers
Nick Kay – Illawarra Hawks
Daniel Kickert – Brisbane Bullets
Mitch McCarron – Cairns Taipans
Brad Newley – Sydney Kings
Mitch Norton – Illawarra Hawks