Australia beat Japan to secure Fiba Asia Cup semi-final berth

AUSTRALIA took advantage of the absence of Yuta Watanabe to give the boot to Japan, 99-85, on Thursday to book their place in the semi-finals of the Fiba Asian Cup 2022 at Istora Senayan in Jakarta.

NBA veteran Thon Maker led the way with 21 points, 13 rebounds and five assists in 27 minutes for the undefeated Boomers, who methodically tore through a Japanese team that sorely missed the Toronto Raptors forward’s presence .

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The reigning Asian champions now move on to the Final Four where they will face the winner of the last quarter-final between New Zealand and Korea.

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Rhys Vague had 19 points and five under, while Samson Froling had 15 points and six boards for the Boomers.

With Watanabe struggling with a sprained ankle picked up in the game against Gilas Pilipinas two days ago, Australia took a 15-3 lead to set the tone for a rout as they enjoyed a lead from 49-34 at half time which increased to 21 points, 75-54 entering the payment period.

It was a dominating performance for the Boomers downstairs with his 36 points in the paint while grabbing 51 rebounds to Japan’s 29.

Keisei Tominaga led the Akatsuki Five with 33 points on 8-of-15 shooting from deep, in addition to his five rebounds, while Yuki Togashi recorded 14 points and five assists in the loss.

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