Australia basketball team mark maiden FIBA Asian Cup with title triumph over Iran
The Boomers comfortably defeat Iran in the final
Australia shrugged off the absence of their NBA stars to claim the 2017 FIBA Asian Cup for the first time in their maiden participation on Sunday, sweeping past three-time champions Iran 79-56 in the final held in Lebanon.
Brad Newley led the way for Australia with 18 points and one rebound, Daniel Kickert added 14 points and six rebounds, while Mitch Creek contributed 12 points, four rebounds and four assists.
Australia led 43-26 at half-time and even though Iran were the better side in the third quarter with a 17-13 edge, the Aussies regained their authority in the last quarter, notably with a 10-1 run.
Iran’s Hamed Haddadi, who was voted the most valuable player of the tournament, scored 18 points in the final with Arsalan Kazemi adding nine points and 10 rebounds.
South Korea took third place by seeing off New Zealand 80-71.
Defending Asian champions China, kings of the continent on 16 occasions, ended in a disappointing fifth place by just edging hosts Lebanon 79-78 in a play-off.