Fresh off their enthralling NBA Finals series, Andrew Bogut and Matthew Dellavedova have been named in the Boomers squad for Australia’s upcoming tour of Europe, as well as the all important Olympic qualifiers in the 2015 FIBA Oceania Championship.
Fresh off of taking out the NBA Championship with his Golden State Warriors, Bogut will take the figurehead role in the extended Boomers squad – announced today by Basketball Australia – as it prepares to head to Europe for a string of warm-up games against Slovenia and Lithuania.
The national squad features a raft NBA players and rates as one of the strong Australian men’s basketball sides assembled in recent memory. Dellavedova – whose storied NBA Finals run as backup point guard for the Cleveland Cavaliers will surely be the stuff of folklore in years to come – steps into the starting point guard role for the tour, in the absence of the injured Patty Mills.
After the Boomers arrive back from Europe, they clash with the New Zealand Tall Blacks for the Oceania Championship – the winner of the two leg tournament receives automatic qualification into the 2016 Rio Olympic Games.
Along with Bogut and Delly, the Boomers squad features Cameron Bairstow, David Andersen, Dante Exum, Ryan Broekhoff, Adam Gibson, Chris Goulding, Nate Jawai, Damian Martin, Brock Motum, and Brad Newley.
Mills ongoing shoulder problems meant he and NBA team San Antonio Spurs came to a joint decision to declare him as unavailable for the European tour. Whilst he technically would be available for the Oceania Championships clash, Basketball Australia has made the decision to omit him from those games in order to preserve team coherency and preparation.
Additionally, Mills’ former teammate Aron Baynes – who recently signed on with the Detroit Pistons – is unavailable for the matches after undergoing ankle surgery.
Australia’s other NBA representative, Joe Ingles, has also been left out of the team.
The European tour will see Australia tackle Lithuania on July 29th, and again on the 31st, before meeting Slovenia on August 3rd and 4th.
The huge clash against New Zealand will serve as a double header, with the Opals taking on the Tall Ferns in the first leg of the Championships on August 15th at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne.
Tickets for the massive clashes are getting scarce, with under 2000 remaining. Both games will be shown live and free on the Nine Network.
The return leg takes place in Wellington on August 18th.
Photo: Robert Cianflone via Getty Images.
via Basketball Australia.