The Tall Blacks have notched another convincing World Cup qualifier win on home soil today thanks in part to the efforts of big man Rob Loe off the bench.
The New Zealand men's basketball team hosted China at Auckland's Spark Arena today where they secured a 67-57 win with Loe contributing a double-double of 13 points and 10 rebounds off the bench.
The super sub shot 71 per cent from the field, including three three-pointers, while also adding three assists, two steals and four blocks.
The impact off the bench was vital after China clawed their way back in to the contest in the third quarter to tie the game at 47-47 with a minute remaining.
China's comeback was steered by young forward Abudushalamu Abudurexiti who finished the game with a double-double of his own, collecting 23 points and 12 rebounds.
But his efforts weren't enough as the Tall Blacks made a late push in the fourth quarter to secure the game with composed time management and clutch and-ones.
Isaac Fotu top-scored for the hosts with 15 points while veteran guard Tom Abercrombie was close behind on 14.
Shea Ili once again contributed with his passing game, notching six assists in the game.
The win sees the Tall Blacks finish the first round of pool play qualifiers with a 5-1 record, meaning they will move on to group E where they will likely be joined by Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.
The next round of qualifying takes place in September.