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Boomers go full bore at Kazakhstan

ISAAC Humphries this morning changed what looked as if it might be a long night for the Boomers in Astana into a guaranteed first-place Group finish with an 81-60 victory over Kazakhstan.

The Kazakhs started full of pluck in the FIBA World Cup qualifier, sticking 3-pointers and giving Andrej Lemanis' greatly revamped Australian team a bit to think about.

Mitch Creek (12 points on 5-of-7 shooting, five assists, two steals) naturally looked the most comfortable in the early going, while the rest of Lemanis' raw Aussie team found their feet.

But Humphries' introduction late in the first quarter immediately changed the tenor of the contest as he scored a rapid-fire eight points on 4-of-5 shooting in four minutes.

Ahead 27-20 after one, that was out to 39-28 by halftime, before a 7-0 start to the third quarter put this one on ice.

Humphries (above) finished with 17 points on 8-of-11 shooting, with seven rebounds and an assist in a very impressive senior debut.

Creek and Jock Landale (below) threw down impressive dunks as Lemanis cleared his bench, 11 of the 12-man rotation scoring.

Tim Coenraad's nine points came on 3-of-4 threes, Emmett Naar dished six assists, Tom Wilson had eight points and six rebounds, with Lucas Walker's eight points on 3-of-3 shooting.

Australia's 19 turnovers was unusually high but could be put down to the new-look team still getting acquainted as they succeeded in forwarding the Boomers' growing international legacy.

The Boomers face Iran on Monday in their final qualifier.

AUSTRALIA BOOMERS 81 (Humphries 17, Creek 12, Landale 10; Humphries 7 rebs; Naar 6 assts) d KAZAKHSTAN 60 (Clemmons 31, Yergali 10; Zhigulin 8 rebs; Zhigulin, Clemmons 3 assts) in Astana.

Feb 22

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