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Hodgson and Kay will lead Australia at the Asian Qualifiers fourth window
CANBERRA (FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Asian Qualifiers) - Three returnees and two debutantes will feature in Australia's final roster for the fourth window of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Asian Qualifiers next month.
Big men Matthew Hodgson and Jesse Wagstaff return to the national team together with floor general Mitch Norton as the Boomers aim to add two more wins to their 5-win tally in the Asian Qualifiers. Joining them are Todd Blanchfield and Daniel Johnson, both of whom will be seeing action in the Asian Qualifiers for the first time.
|Australia 12-player roster for FIBA Basketball World Cup 2019 Asian Qualifiers|
|Todd Blanchfield||Angus Brandt||Jason Cadee||Anthony Drmic|
|Matthew Hodgson||Daniel Johnson||Nicholas Kay||Kevin Lisch|
|Mitch McCarron||Mitch Norton||Nathan Sobey||Jesse Wagstaff|
The 6ft 11in (2.11m) Hodgson saw action for the Green & Gold in their first four games of the Asian Qualifiers, averaging 8.5 points and 6.3 rebounds per game, while Norton and Wagstaff both saw action in the second window clashes against the Philippines and Chinese Taipei. All three were not called up in the third window, but they are expected to make their stamp here in the fourth window as Australia face Qatar and Kazakhstan.
Blanchfield, meanwhile, was part of the Boomers squad that romped to the FIBA Asia Cup 2017 title and should provide added depth at the wing position, especially with star player Mitch Creek missing the fourth window. Johnson, for his part, was an All-NBL First Team 2018 member after putting up around 16 points, 7 rebounds and 3 assists per contest.
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT | The 🇦🇺 Boomers are set to begin the second round of @FIBAWC qualifiers following the release of their team to compete against Qatar on September 13: https://t.co/d4jRQhJTBr #GoBoomers pic.twitter.com/5VcDz4P39O— Basketball Australia (@BasketballAus) August 21, 2018
"It's great for both Todd and Daniel to have this opportunity," said Australia head coach Andrej Lemanis. "Todd knows the Boomers system and culture from the FIBA Asia Cup campaign and will slot straight back in to the group."
Also on the roster is 6ft 9in (2.06m) frontliner Nicholas Kay, who has played in all six Asian Qualifiers games so far. He has been solid for coach Lemanis, averaging 7.3 points and 5.3 boards per outing, and he should assemble for a formidable frontline combo together with Hodsgon.
Rounding out the squad are other players who've seen action in the first three Asian Qualifiers windows - Jason Cadee, Mitch McCarron, Angus Brandt and Nathan Sobey - along with returnees Kevin Lisch and Anthony Drmic.
The Boomers play Qatar at the Al Gharafa Sports Club on 13 September before flying back home to host Kazakhstan on 17 September at the Bendigo Stadium.