The Singapore Slingers announced their 2015-16 roster for the upcoming ABL season earlier this evening.
The local contingent sees veterans Wong Wei Long, Desmond Oh, Ng Han Bin, Delvin Goh, Chase Tan and Wu Qingde returning. However, it also features 4 new local players – Leon Kwek, John Tan, Kelvin Lim and Toh Qing Huang.
Missing from the roster though were standout rookies from last season, Russel Low and Larry Liew, who were unable to re-sign with the team due to undisclosed reasons.
With the departure of two budding stars, the team can only look towards the development a new young core of rookie players this season.
Amongst the 4 rookies, 19- year old Leon Kwek will be heading the pack, having gained some reputation from playing a prominent role in Singapore’s recent FIBA Asia Campaign.
The 6’2 Leon averaged 7.8 points and 4.6 rebounds in 22 minutes of action, and even started a game against Korea where he scored an international career high of 12 points.
As a guard-forward, Leon’s strength is in his athletic ability. This translates well into the ability to rebound the ball and finish around the rim.
There is no coincidence Leon Kwek’s game is one that closely resembles one of the Slingers’ all-time great, the “Flyboy”, Hong Wei Jian. Wei Jian was in fact Leon’s personal mentor for much of his formative basketball years.
Will we see Leon carry the torch of his mentor Hong Wei Jian this season?
Another standout rookie to watch is 20-year old guard Toh Qing Huang, who is another budding player on the national team.
The 6’0 Qing Huang is a lighting quick fleeting footed guard who will add much needed speed to the Slingers contingent.
The other 2 additional to the squad is the 21-year old John Ng and 19-year old Kelvin Lim.
Both John and Kelvin are 6’3 wing players who will add much needed length and size on the perimeter.
With the signing of 4 promising rookies, the Slingers are definitely looking towards their future.
Who amongst these 4 young players will blossom into Singapore’s next superstar?
All eyes are watching.