Boomers depart for London Invitational Tournament

Boomers depart for London Invitational Tournament

NBA star Patty Mills and European stalwarts Matt Nielsen (captain), Brad Newley and Joe Ingles headline the 14-member Australian Boomers men’s national basketball team that will travel to London today for the official Olympic test event, the London International Basketball Invitational.

Also named in the side are NBL stars Damian Martin (Perth Wildcats), Adam Gibson (Gold Coast Blaze) and Mark Worthington (Gold Coast Blaze). 

The Boomers wrapped their five-day Gold Coast camp yesterday, which has seen the squad on-court for four hours a day since Monday. With the knowledge that two players would not make the cut for the London trip, the stakes were high and so was the intensity.

According to Boomers head coach Brett Brown, the London trip is the perfect end to the team’s preparations for the FIBA Oceania Series against New Zealand.   

“It’s been a long process and unfortunately we had to release two players today which is always difficult,” said Brett Brown as camp wrapped yesterday.

“It’s exciting to be able to go to London and play the level of competition that we’ll be playing and it’s just a fantastic final step to try and be ready for the Kiwis,” he said.

The team faces China first up on Tuesday, which starts a gruelling three days of competition that will see the team face off against France and then Croatia.

With a rest day in between, the Boomers then finish off the London trip with games against Serbia and Great Britain, before heading for Spain where they will play two games against the Spanish national team. 

“We just want to be a little bit better,” Brown said of the team’s goals for London.

“With the good games that we’re playing, we get to look at our rotations and test our structure against some of the world’s best talent.

“You know, you’re playing Spain two times, you’re playing (NBA star) Tony Parker’s French team, you’ve got Croatia and Serbia, it’s just all good. I’m just grateful that BA was able to put together such a fantastic preparation schedule,” he said.  

The team flies to Melbourne from Brisbane this afternoon at 3.30pm and they are schedule to arrive at 5.00pm. Their flight to London is then scheduled to depart tonight at 11.00pm tonight.

2011 Australian Boomers Men’s Basketball Team: European Tour

David BARLOW, Murcia, Spain

Aron BAYNES, EWE Basket Oldenburg, Germany

Peter CRAWFORD, Townsville Crocodiles

Matthew DELLAVEDOVA, St Mary's College, USA

Adam GIBSON, Gold Coast Blaze

Joe INGLES, Regal FC Barcelona, Spain

Daniel KICKERT, PGE Turow, Poland

Aleks MARIC, Panathinaikos, Greece

Damian MARTIN, Perth Wildcats

Patrick MILLS, Portland Trailblazers, USA

Brad NEWLEY, Lietuvos, Rytas, Lithuania

Matthew NIELSEN, BC Khimki, Russia

AJ OGILVY, Valencia, Spain

Mark WORTHINGTON, Gold Coast Blaze

London International Basketball Invitational - Schedule

16 Aug            Olympic Test Event vs. China - London, England

17 Aug            Olympic Test Event vs. France - London, England

18 Aug            Olympic Test Event vs. Croatia - London, England

20 Aug            Olympic Test Event vs. Serbia - London, England

21 Aug            Olympic Test Event vs. Great Britain - London, England

Event website: