0625 GMT November 15, 2019
Cleveland Cavaliers' Matthew Dellavedova was key for the Boomers, leading the way with 24 points after Canada had battled back from a 12-point halftime deficit to lead going into the fourth quarter, AFP reported.
Along with Serbia, Greece, Spain and France, Australia has been mentioned as a threat to America's long dominance, but it will need to defy history – the Boomers have never gone beyond the quarterfinals in 11 previous World Cup appearances.
Australia began their title bid in the southern Chinese city of Dongguan against a Canada side led by NBA champion coach Nick Nurse but missing many of its biggest names.
In a highly competitive Group H also containing Lithuania and Senegal, Australia led 52-40 at halftime with Joe Ingles of NBA team the Utah Jazz scoring 10 points and registering three assists against Canada's slack defense. He finished with a match-leading 10 assists.
Veteran Andrew Bogut had been a doubt going into the clash with Nurse's men, but Australia's star center played and had nine rebounds.
Canada came out for the third period with serious intent, racking up nine unanswered points to rattle the stunned Australians and claw the match back.
The lead changed hands several times but Canada miraculously went into the decisive fourth stanza 77-76 ahead.
Yet Canada appeared to have run out of juice and a relentless Australia finally pulled away in the decisive fourth quarter.