Basketball

Mills, Ingles headline 12-strong Boomers team for Tokyo Games

NBA stars Patty Mills and Joe Ingles will lead the Australian Boomers at their fourth Olympic Games as the national side chases a maiden medal in Tokyo.

The Boomers unveiled its final 12-man roster on Saturday, featuring seven Olympic debutants and the established core of Mills, Ingles, Matthew Dellavedova and Aron Baynes.

The latter two return for their third Olympics while Chris Goulding has also been named to make his second.

Debutants include the likes of Danté Exum, Josh Green and Philadelphia 76ers guard Matisse Thybulle.

Rising star Josh Giddey, Xavier Cooks and Brock Motum have also been named as replacement players.

The Boomers, who finished fourth in Rio, will launch their Olympics campaign against Nigeria on July 25.

Triple Olympian Baynes said the team is determined to hunt down that elusive medal, but they face an uncertain path with their two remaining pool opponents yet to be confirmed.

“Unfinished business is in the forefront of all our minds. We’re all excited to get out there and chase that gold medal,” Baynes said.

“There’s so much young talent coming through in Australian basketball that we’re excited to incorporate into the Boomers system and hopefully lets us take that next step. When we can mix that and incorporate that team chemistry quickly, that will be key to our success.

“It’s the highest honour for us playing basketball to get to play with our mates who have all grown up together and are second family now. We just want to carry that over and instil it in the young guys.”

The Boomers will fine tune their preparations with exhibition matches against the United States, Nigeria and Argentina in Las Vegas.

Thybulle joined the Boomers earlier this week after a strong season with Philadelphia, which saw the 24-year-old named on the NBA All-Defensive second team.

His inclusion comes as a big boost for the Boomers after his 76ers teammate, Ben Simmons, opted to skip the Olympics to focus on developing his skills.

“Even though this season was crazy and we had aspirations for achieving more than we did, through all of it [this] was in the back of my mind,” the Philadelphia guard said.

“I was really excited for when once that opportunity came to a close, just to really step into this and keep it going.

“Ever since we realised it was a possibility, that I was eligible to be considered for the [Australian] team, it was always kind of there.”

The Australian Opals will join the men’s team in Las Vegas for a pre-Olympic camp, with a match lined up against the United States on July 16.

Australian Boomers’ Olympic team: Patty Mills, Matthew Dellavedova, Joe Ingles, Aron Baynes, Matisse Thybulle, Danté Exum, Josh Green, Nick Kay, Jock Landale, Chris Goulding, Duop Reath, Nathan Sobey. Replacement players: Josh Giddey, Xavier Cooks, Brock Motum.

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