Boomers blow lead, France win World Cup bronze

Boomers coach Andrej Lemanis insists the belief remains but is bracing for the inevitable backlash after Australia coughed up another big lead to finish fourth at the basketball World Cup.

The Australians lost to France 67-59 in the bronze medal game in Beijing on Sunday, giving up a 15 point lead when they appeared in complete control in the third quarter.

It followed the theme of Friday's semi-final loss in double overtime to Spain, when they were up by 11 but couldn't land the killer blow.

It is the fifth time the Boomers have lost a bronze-medal game, the four previous coming in Olympic competition and most recent a one-point loss to Spain in Brazil three years ago.

The Boomers were humming in the third term when Ingles' (17 points) three-point play over Utah Jazz teammate Gobert put them up by 15.

But he went off briefly thanks to the blood rule and it all fell apart, France heating up after a 25 per cent shooting effort from the field in their worst World Cup first half since 1963.

Turnovers, 19 in this game, were again the killer while four-of-17 shooting from long range left them with nothing to counter France with when they finally woke up.

Andrew Albicy's nine points came at all the right times for France, while Nando de Colo's 19 points cancelled out Patty Mills' 15.

Aron Baynes entered with a groin injury but played through the pain in a shortened 13-minute stint, having starred against the French in Monday's 100-98 win in Nanjing.

Lemanis said fatigue played into their poor execution down the stretch in both losses, pointing out they had played well in clutch moments earlier in the tournament as they built a 6-0 record.

"I don't know; I guess we'll find out in time, right?," he said when asked if the side had a monkey on its back.

"I guess that's what everybody will talk about, but you play the game as it unfolds in front of you .

"You can't question the effort and I think there's certainly belief in the group that we're good enough to go get a medal."

The entire team refused to address media as they left the court, many heading to the dressing room with tears in their eyes after another near miss.

"We just sat in the change room and you could hear a pin drop until we walked out here," bench utility Mitch Creek said in the press conference later.

For everyone in Australia. ... everyone that supported us and backed us in ... it means the world to us.

"We gave it absolutely everything we had."

It is more heartbreak for Lemanis and the core group that came within one basket of Olympic bronze against Spain at the 2016 Olympics.

"The sorrow comes from the effort that the boys put in," he said.

"Them not being rewarded for the sacrifices and commitment to them and playing the right way."

BOOMERS BRONZE-GAME WOES

* 1988 Seoul Olympics - lost 78-49 to USA

* 1996 Atlanta Olympics - lost 80-74 to Lithuania

* 2000 Sydney Olympics - lost 89-71 to Lithuania

* 2016 Rio Olympics - lost 89-88 to Spain

* 2019 China World Cup - lost 67-59 to France.