The road to the 2019 FIBA World Cup in China is in full swing.
After dismantling Chinese Taipei and Japan, by 38 and 24 points respectively in November, the Boomers will head to Melbourne in February next year for two World Cup qualifiers.
The Boomers will face the Philippines on February 22nd and Chinese Taipei on February 25th, with both games being held at Margaret Court Arena.
The Philippines pose a threat to Australia, after they too won their two qualifiers in November. The meeting will see the two top teams in Pool B face off - with the winner all but booking their ticket to the second round of qualifying.
Boomers coach Andrej Lemanis spoke to Basketball Australia about the importance of these two games.
“These two Melbourne games are key in terms of not only advancing to the next round, but also positioning ourselves favourably in the next round." Lemanis said.
"I ask the Melbourne fans, who have always been great basketball fans, to come and help us on the journey, and in the process, get to experience the true feeling and meaning of international basketball – it doesn’t get much better than this.”
Daniel Kickert and Mitch Creek led the way for Australia - a team made up entirely of NBL players - in the two qualifiers in November. Kickert was at his efficient best, going 7/9 from deep, on his way to averaging 18.5 points, 5 rebounds and 3.5 assists over the two games.
One player to watch for on the Philippines team is Jayson Castro William. The 5'10" point guard starred in the two qualifiers in November, averaging 20 points, 5.5 rebounds and 5 assists over the two games.
Australia is currently ranked 10th in the world, whilst the Philippines and Chinese Taipei sit 31st and 57th respectively.
In order to qualify for the 2019 FIBA World Cup, Australia must finish in the top 7 teams in the Asia region at the conclusion of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Qualifiers.
Tickets are available through Ticketek.