Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Philippine school inquiring about Singapore’s Lavin Raj

Philippine school inquiring about Singapore’s Lavin Raj
by rick olivares

The Philippine Star learned that a Philippine college has inquired about recruiting Singapore’s 17-year old center Lavin Raj.

The 6’7” Raj was included in the line-up by Singapore coach Franco Arsego to give the budding center some valuable experience. In two matches – an 85-32 win over Myanmar and a 67-57 loss to Thailand – Raj averaged 11.5 points, 3.5 rebounds, 1.5 steals, and 1.5 turnovers in 14 minutes of play.

The Philippine school’s head coach was the one who inquired through Singapore sources. However, the inquiry has reached Lavin who is said to be intrigued about the proposition. He has reached out to Filipino friends for advice on the matter.

“I am happy to be able to play and contribute,” said Raj after Singapore’s win over Myanmar three days ago. The young cager says he loves the game and has played it for some 10 years now. “In Singapore, basketball is gaining popularity but football is still king.”

“If I can help make basketball popular in my country that is good,” added Raj. “But there is so much to learn. Here in the Seaba, the players are tall and really fast. They have great skill too. Especially among the Filipino players. There is much to learn.”

“Lavin is someone we want to develop,” said Arsego of the young Singaporean center. “There’s so much to work on for the boy. If he works hard he will be an integral piece to Singapore’s national team for many years to come. After all, he’s rather young.”

Observed one other Philippine coach, “Raj has good footwork and a feel for the game. He also knows how to use his weight and size. I am not surprised that some local coach has expressed interest in Lavin,” said the Filipino coach who requested anonymity. “If he is taught properly and exposed to very good competition – plus, he has to work hard – he can be very good.”

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