USA survive first real test of Rio 2016 men’s basketball with narrow win over Australia

Australia run the USA close as Carmelo Anthony becomes his country’s all-time scoring leaderĀ at the Olympic Games

USA survive first real test of Rio 2016 men's basketball with narrow win over Australia

USA survived their first serious test of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, overcoming Australia 98-88 in a tense and enthralling basketball game at Carioca Arena 1 on Wednesday.

In a match-up between two undefeated teams, Australia led by five points at half-time and pushed USA all the way, trailing by as few as five points with 1:20 remaining before the gold medal favourites pulled away.

Carmelo Anthony led all scorers with 31 points, including nine three-pointers, and became USA’s all-time scoring leader at the Olympic Games. Patty Mills nearly matched him with with 30 points to lead Australia.

“We kind of expected a game like this, a physical game, a grind-out game,” Anthony said. “We knew it would come down to the end, where we would have to bunker down and make plays down the stretch.”

Anthony led a long-range shooting barrage with USA hitting 17 three-pointers to Australia’s seven, a difference that accounted for the final 10-point margin.