ThePapare Basketball Championship (TPBC), setting the stage for the next generation of stars, will take center-field in the Sri Lankan basketball fraternity for the second consecutive year allowing twenty-eight top notch schools to compete to become the elite stars of the school’s basketball arena.
TPBC 2016 – A Recap
Asian International School (AIS) entered the championship in Group A. AIS was placed second in the group in the preliminary rounds and went on to play the respective quarter-final match against St. Joseph`s College – Colombo 10. Josephians outsmarted a well-balanced AIS team by eight points as the final score read 61-69. Thus, ended AIS`s run in the 2016 championship.
Arnold Brent, leading the AIS outfit for the 2017 season, has tons of experience under his belt. Having being a part of the national team in both 5×5 and 3×3 formats of the game, his international experience will play an immense role in balancing the AIS team. His talent lies in his game awareness and how soon as a player he can adapt into different game situations. Yet, it will be an uphill task for Brent as he is teamed up with young blood for the season.
The Team in a Nutshell
AIS won the title in 2015 and ended up in the quarter-final stage in 2016. Since then, they have been practicing hard to reclaim their rightful spot once more in the league. AIS will lose the services of their key players, Taher Akbarally and Dhamshike Piyasena.
The team will be very reliant on Brent to carry them through, banking on his experience of representing Sri Lanka. The rest of the team are ready to rally around Brent and give him the support he needs. Along with Brent, Abdul and Joel also have a lot of eyes set on them being young players full of potential who can step up to fill in the gaps of the players that they lost. The team`s strength lies on their agility and speed to get the edge on their opponents and to compensate for the size disadvantage they may face.
AIS plans on taking it a step up from last year and atleast coming into the top 3 teams in the tournament which would be a great achievement by itself playing with such a young team that can play U19 for another a couple of years.
AIS has summer holidays until the end of August making it easier for the team to practice throughout the week and hone their skills leading up to the tournament. Their main focus thus far has been improving their offensive strategies.
Arnold Brent, Captain of AIS speaking to ThePapare.com,
“Unfortunately I wasn’t able to play the tournament last year due to an injury but we’ve been working hard and this is my last season playing for school so I want to do my best to win for my school, coach and for myself.
Ajith Kuruppu, Coach of AIS speaking to ThePapare.com,
“We have a very young side this year that would be able to play for another 2 years at least. We’re hoping to make it to the top 3 spots in the tournament at least which will be a huge achievement in itself considering the young and inexperienced players we have this year.”
Team Line Up
Arnold Brent (Captain), Joel Perera, Sabesh Sathiyanathan , Shalin Abbas, Abdul Rahman , Daniel David, Chris Christie, Imaad Amanulla, Vidhan Chand, Asher, Rasquinho, Sharahabeel Ahmed.