x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

Australia make their size count against Greece at Fiba Under 17 World Championships

China continue their impressive run with defeat of Italy while Spain hold off Argentina

Antonis Koniaris, right, of Greece controls the ball against Dejan Vasiljevic of Australia during their Fiba Under 17 World Championship game at Al Shabab Club on August 12, 2014, in Dubai. Francois Nel / Getty Images
Antonis Koniaris, right, of Greece controls the ball against Dejan Vasiljevic of Australia during their Fiba Under 17 World Championship game at Al Shabab Club on August 12, 2014, in Dubai. Francois Nel / Getty Images

In a meeting of Goliath and Goliath, 2.11-metre Isaac Humphries and Australia trumped 2.16m Giorgios Papagiannis and Greece to reach the quarter-finals of the Fiba Under 17 World Championship.

Humphries, who scored a tournament-best 41 points in a loss to Canada in his team’s previous outing, led Australia with 20 points and 16 rebounds on Tuesday in an 84-76 win that went down to the last minute.

Papagiannis responded with 12 points and four rebounds, but sat out most of the second half as the Greeks opted for a smaller line-up.

“I think I just have a bit of quickness on him,” Humphries said of his opposing big man, “so I used that to my advantage and I think it worked once I figured it out. But I always like a good challenge.

“I honestly think we haven’t shown anything yet. I think we can do so much better and that’s scary.”

Australia play Puerto Rico in Thursday’s quarter-finals at Hamdan Sports Complex.

China booked their place in the last eight with an impressive 79-67 win over Italy. Guard Yanhao Zhao continued as tournament-leading scorer with his second 30-point effort. His 32 points yesterday took his average to 22.3 points a game.

China will face a giant task in the quarter-finals when they meet the United States.

France and Spain will lock horns in the round of eight as well, after the French held off a feisty challenge from the Philippines and the Spaniards dismissed Argentina.

Aaron Noua led the French with 21 points and Stephane Gombauld had 14 points and 20 rebounds in the 86-57 win, after the Philippines had been down just six points at half-time, to the delight of a partisan crowd hoping for a huge upset.

Santiago Yusta had 18 points for Spain in their 64-51 victory over Argentina.

Canada, 106-59 winners over Angola, and Serbia, who beat the UAE 116-31, will meet in the other quarter-final.

jraymond@thenational.ae

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