Boomers Take Down Host Japanese, Advance to Round Two at the World Cup

Noah Strang
By:
Noah Strang
31/08/2023
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Boomers Finish Second in Group E and Move on to the Second Round

The Boomers defeated Japan to advance to round two of the FIBA World Cup but now face a tough task to keep progressing. 

News Insights

  • Boomers take care of business against Japan.
  • Second round format explained.
  • Germany provides a unique roadblock despite not having to play them again.
  • Luka Doncic and Slovenia Outlook.

Australia is into round two of the FIBA World Cup after defeating Japan to go 2-1 in group E, qualifying second. They are now in group K along with Germany, Georgia, and Slovenia and must again finish top two in order to move on to the quarterfinals. 

Boomers Recap Against Japan

The Boomers entered Tuesday night’s matchup with Japan in need of a win to keep their medal dreams alive at the FIBA World Cup. 

They were able to secure a 109-89 victory keeping them in second place in group E and advancing them to the second round. 

Boomer’s head coach Brian Goorjian altered the starting lineup slightly inputting Josh Green at the small forward spot in place of Matisse Thybulle. Other than that, the starters were once again Josh Giddey, Patty Mills, Nick Kay, and DuopReath. 

The Aussies were able to get off to a solid start as both Josh Green and Xavier Cooks scored six points in the opening quarter to help the Boomers lead 25-17 at the end of the frame. 

In the second quarter the Boomers put their foot to the ground and outscored Japan 32-18. The game was seemingly already out of reach at this point with Australia leading 57-35.

However, Japan outscored the Aussies by five points in quarter three and headed into the fourth with a punchers chance at a miracle. The Japanese cut the lead down to 13 with four minutes to play and had the momentum on their side, with the crowd inside Okinawa Arena going crazy. 

Josh Giddey quickly quieted them down with seven straight points to put the game out of reach. Giddey was sensational all-night finishing with 28 points, five rebounds, and 11 assists. Xavier Cooks also had an impressive performance with 24 points and 16 rebounds. 

The win knocked hosts Japan out of medal contention and secured the Boomers a spot in round two. 

FIBA’s Unique Tournament Design Explained

The FIBA World Cup features a unique tournament structure which includes two group stages. Group stage one has now finished, and the Boomers are in group K for the second stage. 

With them are the winners from their group in Germany along with the top two teams from Group F in Slovenia and Georgia. 

The top two teams from this group will advance to the quarterfinals. Importantly, the results from round one carry over into round two meaning Germany and Slovenia, both 3-0, have a leg up on the Boomers and Georgia. 

Along with this, the two teams that came from the same group in round one do not play again in round two. This means if the Boomers are tied on points with Germany after they both play Slovenia and Georgia, the Germans would progress ahead of Australia because of the first tiebreaker being head-to-head.

Group K Outlook for the Boomers

The Boomers will matchup with Slovenia and Georgia in round two and will likely have to win both games to progress to the quarterfinals. 

Slovenia projects to be the tougher of the two matchups strictly because of Luka Doncic. As expected, Doncic has been dominant in this tournament and is the catalyst for nearly everything offensively for Slovenia. 

His Mavericks teammate Josh Green will likely get a chance at guarding him as will Matisse Thybulle. One on one coverage isn’t enough for Doncic however so expect double teams to be thrown at him constantly. 

Georgia does not have anyone nearly the caliber of Doncic but are a big, disciplined team. If the Boomers can keep the rebounding battle close their skill should prevail. 

The Boomers have made it into the second round of the World Cup but face a difficult path to the quarterfinals because they finished second in their group. The Aussie’s likely have to beat both Georgia and Slovenia to move on which is no walk in the park considering Luka Doncic has Slovenia firing on all cylinders.