The Boomers have been used to having NBA championship winners in their centre spot since Sydney 2000.
But with Aron Baynes injured, Andrew Bogut commentating and Luc Longley long retired, they turned to lesser known bigs Jock Landale and Nic Kay and they punched above their weight and heigh as the Boomers beat Germany 89-76 to progress undefeated into the quarter-finals.
Patty Mills was his usual starring self with 24 points but Landale showed he is ready for the NBA with 18 points while Kay was tireless with 16 points in 31 minutes.
Without Baynes, the Boomers saw their rebound count plummet losing 45-28 and that will have to be addressed in the days to come.
But defensively the Boomers forced 17 turnovers and 13 steals – that gave them some easy points and it will need to continue if this side is to give Australia it’s first men’s medal.
Australia will be in the pot with the other group leaders when the random draw happens for quarterfinal places, this means they will avoid the best teams.
But it will only get harder from here.