Boomers star drops World Cup bombshell
PHILADELPHIA 76ers NBA player Jonah Bolden has pulled out of the Boomers' squad ahead of Australia's basketball World Cup campaign in China.
Bolden has told Australian coach Andrej Lemanis he intends to return to Philadelphia due to personal reasons.
In a statement issued on Sunday night by Basketball Australia (BA), Lemanis said he supported the decision.
"My first thought is always with the player in these situations - having to withdraw from the national team is tough for anyone," he said.
"From a team perspective, the timing is sub-optimal but, again, we are very fortunate to have the depth of talent we have in this country available to take up this opportunity.
"Whilst it can feel like we need to make a quick decision, the most important thing is to bring in the player that best compliments the other skill sets we have on the team.
"The Canada series has allowed us to understand a little more about who we are as a team and we need to consider all available players to ensure we add the appropriate set of skills that match the needs of the team."
The BA statement said the Australian coaching panel would discuss and confirm a replacement player for the World Cup and this week's USA warm-up games.
In the two-match Canada series, Australia recovered from an embarrassing 20-point thrashing to a third-string outfit in game one with a 81-73 follow-up victory on Saturday night in Perth.
Bolden was a standout in the second match, with 12 points and five rebounds off the bench.
A huge challenge awaits the Boomers against the USA boasting a roster brimming with NBA talent.
The Boomers travel to Melbourne for games against the two-time reigning World Cup champions on August 22 and 24 in their last warm-ups before heading to China.