Australia unleashed a three-point barrage against a hapless Qatar to register a commanding 51-point victory at Melbourne’s Margaret Court Arena to close out the fifth window of the FIBA World Cup qualifiers.
— Basketball World Cup (@FIBAWC) December 3, 2018
Having already secured a berth in China next year after dismantling Iran, the Boomers rebounded from their poor shooting night on Friday to blow Qatar off the court by scorching the net with 23 three-pointers at a scintillating 56.8% clip. After going scoreless against Iran, Jason Cadee exploded for a game-high 21 points including 5-8 from beyond the arc, with Cameron Gliddon also dropping five triples on his way to 17 points.
While Australia won convincingly, Qatar tried to maintain pace in the first period. While the Boomers were menacing early, back-to-back three-pointers saw the visitors keep the margin at just 4 points. Cadee however ignited a 10-0 run across the last 2 minutes of the term, scoring 8 points including two three’s to enable Australia to open up a 12 point lead at the first break.
While the second period was not pretty, the Boomers continued to grind as they looked to try to blow out the margin. Qatar battled hard, but Australia would take a 50-34 lead into half-time.
Reinvigorated, the Boomers unleashed a 20-4 run against Qatar to open the second half, kick-started by a highlight-reel Matt Hodgson reverse alley-oop slam. With every Boomer making a tangible on-court contribution, the Boomers took total control to blowout the margin to 34 points in outscoring Qatar 32-14 for the period.
Six more triples from the Boomers in the final term saw more of the same, as the home side went on to rout Qatar by 51 points in a lop-sided contest.
Such was the domination of Australia, every player on the roster played at least 12 minutes (Hodgson) and no more than Gliddon’s 22, with everyone scoring at least 3 points (Craig Moller). 62 points came from Australia’s bench, with the Boomers dishing out 32 assists and shooting a red-hot 60.7% from the field overall.
While Cadee and Gliddon combined for 10 trey’s between them, Todd Blanchfield connected on 4-7 from long distance for his 12 points, with David Barlow draining 3-4 from beyond the arc on his way to his 12 points.
After three straight games in Melbourne, the Boomers will close out the sixth FIBA World Cup qualifying window with road games against Kazakhstan and Iran in late February 2019. With a World Cup berth booked, all eyes will be on Andrej Lemanis and his squad to see whether he looks to blood some more youthful players into the senior program in the two games.
Australian Boomers World Cup Asian Qualifying Schedule
September 14: Australia def Qatar 95-43
September 17: Australia def Kazakhstan 94-41
November 30: Australia def Iran 76-49
December 3: Australia def Qatar 110-59
February 21: Australia at Kazakhstan: Time TBA
February 24: Australia at Iran: Time TBA