In their penultimate group stage game, the Aussies took on Japan whose speed bothered them early.

After hitting their first four shots, Japan jumped out to a 5-2 lead but once Australia stepped up their defensive physicality, they quickly got back on track.

Keely Froling’s rim protection was outstanding, tallying half a dozen blocks while Bec Cole sparked them offensively with four points in a row helping Australia to a 7-0 run.

Midway through the contest, the Aussies led by a point but Japan did not go away and moved back in front by two inside the last two minutes.

Alice Kunek responded with a make from beyond the arc to tie the scores with 47 seconds remaining and Maddie Garrick’s defence then stopped Japan from getting up a game-winning attempt, sending the contest into overtime.

Needing only two points for victory, Australia looked for a long-range bomb to clinch it but Garrick’s shot came off the rim.

A lucky break saw Japan fumble the rebound out of bounds and with a second chance, Australia ran the same play. This time, Garrick made no mistake, sinking the game-winning two for an 18-16 victory which also clinched them a spot in the Quarter-Finals.

Australia had recently defeated France in a clash in China but another slow start in their final group stage game saw France score the first three points of the game.

Cole was able to settle things down with an and-one play and then two makes from long-range courtesy of Kunek gave Australia a 10-8 lead at the midway point.

The teams went back and forth for the next few minutes as they both displayed efficient offences but France broke the shackles, scoring three in a row to gain some breathing space inside the last minute.

Garrick responded to keep Australia within touching distance but they could not get over the line, with a late two from Froling cutting the deficit to one in the end, 16-17.

That loss to France meant Australia finished second in Group B and will now take on Russia at 1am AEST in the Quarter-Final.

The Semi-Finals and medal games will then be held late Sunday night/early Monday morning Australian time.

All games will be live-streamed via the FIBA 3×3 YouTube channel while stats are available via the official tournament website and you can watch a replay of Australia’s two games from Day 3 below.

Australia’s schedule at the 2019 FIBA 3×3 World Cup (all times AEST):

June 19: Australian men def. Brazil 21-15
June 19: Australian men def. by Poland 14-16
June 20: Australian women def. Andorra 22-9
June 20: Australian women def. Switzerland 20-14
June 21: Australian men def. by Latvia 16-20
June 21: Australian men def. Japan 22-12
June 22: Australian women def. Japan 18-16 in OT
June 22: Australian women def. by France 16-17
June 23: Australian women Quarter-Final vs. Russia at 1am
June 23: Australian women Semi-Finals at 10.10pm or 10.40pm
June 24: Australian women bronze medal at 1.40am, gold medal at 2.50am

Australia’s incredible winning steak in international competition came to an end but the women have still advanced to the 2019 FIBA 3×3 World Cup finals after splitting their games on Day 4.

Basketball Australia

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