Gladly seen guest at the AST are the Australians. The team from “down under” already takes part for the ninth time in the AST games. Since 1994 the team with the long journey has been coming continously to Mannheim and has been properly winning. Highlight up to now was the 2nd place in 1998 but also the 3rd places in 1994 and 2008 and even the 4th place in 2000 are worth mentioning.
In 2004 Australia was unlucky with the group drawing to compete against the later tournament winner Turkey and Finland early on in the preliminary round. Both games were lost only by a few points, so it sufficed “only” to play with China for the ninth place. They were defeated by 92:93. The same story took place in 2006 as Australia lost vs. France (AST champion 2006) and Lithuania in the preliminary round and came finally in 9th.
2008 finally an extremely homogeneous Australian squad thrilled the fans. Who can forget the semi final vs. later champion Greece (79:84 after overtime) or the 87:67 blow vs the USA in the bronze medal game? With Australia the 5th placed team from last year´s U19 World Championship is coming to the AST. In 2003 the Australian team round Andrew Bogut (participated at the AST 2002), who meanwhile plays in the NBA with the Milwaukee Bucks, won the world championship in Greece.