Majority of the countries taking part in the 2017 SEABA Championship in Manila will opt to use veteran cagers for their squads. But Malaysia swerved from the trend, as they will field in a much younger lineup in the regional tilt.
Malaysia’s decision to utilize players with an average age of 24 years old aligns with their long-term plans, which aim to develop the young wards for more cagefests in the near future, especially the Southeast Asian Games and in the new international game windows.
Eight of the 12 Malaysian players have already seen action in Manila, where they had suited up for Blustar Detergent Dragons in the 2017 PBA D-League Aspirants’ Cup as a guest team. And manning their sidelines again is Goh Cheng Huat.
The team’s D-Leaguers are Alvin Ang, Vincent Choong, Mak Lok Seng, Heng Yee Tong, Ong Wei Yong, Chin Zhi Shin, Liaw Chee Huei, and Anthony Liew. Completing the cast are Chan Kek Thai, Teo Kok Hou, Choo Wei Hong, and Ting Chun Hong.
Players notably missing in the national team are 6-foot-7 big men Kuek Tian Yuan and Kwaan Yoong Jing; small forwards Ma Chee Kheun, Wong Yi Hou, and Lo Shee Fai; and their leading scorer back in FIBA-Asia Championship, guard Ivan Yeo.