Australia parades tall, almost intact lineup in home qualifier against Gilas
Daniel Kickert, Mitch Creek and Jason Cadee lead the Boomers vs Gilas. Photo illustration by Warren Salvacion

GILAS Pilipinas will face an Australian team parading almost the same lineup that blew by the competition when the second window of the 2019 Fiba World Cup Asian Qualifiers resumes with the Philippine team heading to Melbourne on February 22.

Leading the way for the unbeaten Australia team is 6-foot-10 Daniel Kickert, the 34-year-old power forward who led the Boomers in scoring during Window 1 with 18.5 points while making 3.5 triple in 18.8 minutes per game.

Backing up Kickert is 25-year-old wing Mitch Creek. The 6-foot-5 forward averaged 11.5 points and 7.5 rebounds in the first two games for the unbeaten Australia team sharing Group B lead with Gilas.

Jason Cadee, 26, will continue to run the point for the Boomers. The 6-foot-1 guard led Australia in assists with 5.5 dimes, and ended up third in scoring with 10.5 points.

Matt Hodgson, the 6-foot-11 center, and 6-foot-6 shooter Cameron Gliddon complete Australia’s starting unit who are still included in the final roster for Window 2.

The reserves are led by forward Nick Kay (25, 6-foot-9), center Angus Brandt (28, 6-foot-10), and guards Mitch McCarron (25, 6-foot-2), Nathan Sobey (27, 6-foot-4) and Chris Goulding (29, 6-foot-4).

New faces complete the Boomers roster as 6-foot-8 forward Jesse Wagstaff and 6-foot-2 guard Kevin Lisch, both accomplished stars in Australia’s National Basketball League, will suit up in Window 2.

June Mar Fajardo and Jayson Castro lead the Gilas roster with naturalized player Andray Blatche expected to join the team earlier. Kiefer Ravena, Kevin Alas, Jio Jalalon, RR Pogoy, Matthew Wright, Allein Maliksi, Gabe Norwood, Carl Bryan Cruz, Mac Belo, Troy Rosario, and Japeth Aguilar are included in the pool as coach Chot Reyes has yet to finalize the 12-man roster

Both Gilas and Australia beat Group B members Japan and Chinese Taipei to share the lead with a 2-0 record. After the clash with the Boomers, Gilas will host Japan on February 25. 

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