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2019 Basketball World Cup, Quarter-final: Australia vs Czech Republic
|Venue: Shanghai Oriental Sports Centre, Shanghai, China|
|Match time: Fulltime|
The Australian Boomers will look to keep their dreams of medalling at the Basketball World Cup for the first time alive when they take on the Czech Republic in the quarter-finals. Join The Roar for live scores and coverage from 11pm (AEST).
The Boomers, by their own admission at times, have been anything but perfect through the opening five matches of their World Cup campaign, but still find themselves undefeated at this point of the campaign.
Incredibly, they came away with a one-point victory over France in their last start to ensure they would avoid the USA and Serbia, who have since been elimination, until the final.
Instead of being drawn into the nasty half of the draw, they instead find the Czech Republic in the final eight, followed by Spain in the semi-final, who beat Poland yesterday.
Australia have been good when it’s counted, with their shooting coming to the fore through Patty Mills, Chris Goulding, Joe Ingles and Aron Baynes, but they can’t continue to rely on it to get them out of every sticky situation.
The Boomers have also been incredibly unselfish with the ball, recording a huge number of assists.
However, when their shooting does go away, they lack offensive patience at times, and their defence of the pick and roll has been atrocious, something the Czech Republic will look to exploit in this knockout game.
The European nation hardly have a roster as scary as the USA, and while they did lose to the best in the world and Greece throughout the campaign, they have still made it to the final eight after a tense final day of the second round.
They have some high-quality bigs on their roster, and to beat Australia, they will all need to have excellent games, while being able to feed off the creativity of the only NBA player on their roster, point guard Tomas Satoransky.
Ondrej Balvin and Martin Kriz will be the two to watch out for early in the game, and the Czech Republic’s starting five has consisted of only the one guard as they look to catch teams out by playing with lots of size on the floor.
That, in truth, will be their best shot against Australia – to frustrate Mills, Ingles and Matthew Dellavdova, and hope at least one of them end up in foul trouble.
While the Czech Republic certainly aren’t without a hope, when you look at the two roster’s on paper, this would be a dismal end to the campaign if the Boomers weren’t to win here.
Boomers by 9.
Be sure to join The Roar for live coverage of this Basketball World Cup quarter-final from 11pm (AEST) and don’t forget to add a comment in the section below.
Tip-off: 11pm (AEST)
Venue: Shanghai Oriental Sports Centre, Shanghai, China
TV: Live, Fox Sports More 507
Online: Live, Kayo Sports, Foxtel App, Foxtel Now
Betting: Australia $1.17, Czech Republic $5.10
Point guard: Patty Mills
Shooting guard: Matthew Dellavedova
Small forward: Joe Ingles
Power forward: Jock Landale
Centre: Aron Baynes
Bench: Andrew Bogut, Mitch Creek, Cameron Gliddon, Chris Goulding, Nick Kay, David Barlow, Nathan Sobey
Point guard: Tomas Satoransky
Shooting guard: Vojtech Hruban
Small forward: Jaromir Bohacik
Power forward: Martin Kriz
Centre: Ondrej Balvin
Bench: Partik Auda, Tomas Vyoral, Pavel Pumprla, Blake Schilb, Jakub Sirina, Martin Peterka, Lukas Palyza