FIBA investigates Australia over World Cup defeat

FIBA investigates Australia over World Cup defeat

Basketball`s ruling body on Monday launched an investigation into Australia over suspicions that they deliberately lost a group match at the World Cup to avoid playing the United States.

Australia, who rested two of their top players Joe Ingles and Aron Baynes, lost to Angola 91-83 in their last Group D game in Gran Canaria last Thursday. The Australians lost 64-62 to Turkey in the last 16 on Sunday to crash out of the tournament altogether.

"The on-court behaviour displayed by Australia in that game (against Angola) generated huge disappointment by basketball fans and experts," said a FIBA statement. 

"It is widely suspected that Australia lost that game in order to avoid having to face the reigning world champions USA until the semi-finals," it added.

Basketball Australia can state its case to the governing body before FIBA decides whether disciplinary sanctions are imposed, the statement said.

Australia`s defeat ensured that they finished third in the group. Angola ended the group second bottom with just two wins.