An extended Australian Boomers squad has been named ahead of the 2023 FIBA World Cup, set to begin at the end of August across three Asian countries.
The 18-man squad features 10 of Australia's 11 NBA players -- Ben Simmons was not included, though there's the potential for him to be added ahead of the selection camp -- along with some of the country's best NBL and Europe-based talent.
Patty Mills, Joe Ingles, Matthew Dellavedova, Danté Exum, Chris Goulding, Josh Green, Nick Kay, Jock Landale, Duop Reath, and Matisse Thybulle, all of whom were members of Australia's bronze medal winning team at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, headline the squad selected by head coach Brian Goorjian.
Josh Giddey and Dyson Daniels, both impact players in the NBA and among Australia's best young talent, were named in the squad.
Rounding out the squad ahead of selection camp are: Xavier Cooks, Sam Froling, Thon Maker, William McDowell-White, Keanu Pinder, and Jack White. Cooks, Pinder, and McDowell-White are coming off impressive NBL seasons, while White spent the 2022-23 NBA season as a two-way player for the Denver Nuggets.
Aron Baynes, who was part of that Olympic team and has been a mainstay of the Boomers over the past decade, was not named in the 18-man group. Simmons hopes to play for the Australian national team in this World Cup, sources told ESPN's Brian Windhorst, with his return to play set to be dictated by the progress of his recovery from a back injury.
The extended squad will take part in a training camp in Cairns, Queensland, ahead of the World Cup, which runs from August 25, through to September 10.
The Boomers were drawn into Group E for the World Cup, alongside Germany, Finland, and Japan. The Boomers will play their first two group phases in Okinawa, Japan, before traveling to Manila, Philippines for the finals games, should they qualify. Germany is coming off a third-place finish at the 2022 Eurobasket, Japan will have home court advantage, and Finland is expected to feature their NBA All-Star, Lauri Markkanen.
Goorjian, who's in the third year of his second stint as head coach of the Boomers, said of the extended squad: "Pulling together this extended squad has taken time -- it's been a thorough process. The coaches and I have had many discussions about getting the mix right, but I'm really pleased with where we've landed with the guys we've selected, there's a good balance across the court.
"The fact it's been so tough goes to show the depth of talent we have in Australian basketball right now and this extends back to all the pathway programs, the Centre of Excellence and the dedicated coaches who have been committed to growing our game, setting the standard, and getting us to this position.
"After the draw took place around a week ago and we know who and where we're playing, we're excited and eager to get stuck in and prepare for what will be an extremely challenging tournament."
Matthew Nielsen, Adam Caporn, and David Patrick will return as assistant coaches under Goorjian, while Jacob Chance -- currently the associate head coach of the Tasmania JackJumpers -- joins the program as the Head of Video and Analytics.
The World Cup will be Giddey's first opportunity to play for the Boomers in a major international tournament, after being among the final cuts ahead of the Tokyo Olympics. The 20-year-old is currently Australia's most prolific NBA player, averaging 16.6 points, 7.9 rebounds, and 6.2 assists per game in his second season with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
"I've always dreamed of playing for the Boomers and representing Australia, so to get this opportunity is really special and I'm looking forward to competing at the World Cup," Giddey said.
"There's a lot of talent in this squad and I think we've got a good chance of matching it with every team -- I'm excited for the challenge and to see what we can produce as a group on the world stage."
The Boomers finished the 2019 World Cup in fourth place, falling to France in the bronze medal game. The program is coming off its first medal in a major international tournament, winning bronze at the Tokyo Olympics.
Australian Boomers' extended squad