Guga, Tian Yuen to feature in All Stars game


B. Guganeswaran (right) will join others in the Asian selection to play an exhibition match against a PBAA All Stars team which includes Dennis Rodman.

PETALING JAYA: Malaysian cagers B. Guganeswaran and Kuek Tian Yuen have been included in the team list for the MJ Life Asia Basketball All Star team which is set to face the Ninetology Professional Basketball Alumni Association (PBAA) All Stars in an exhibition match on Nov 2 at the Putra Stadium, Bukit Jalil.

Guganeswaran, better known as just Guga, is the captain for the Westports Malaysia Dragons and is one of the more prominent faces in the local basketball scene.

He also played a starring role in the Agong Cup National Championships in August, as Malacca reclaimed their national title from Police.

The 31-year-old who recently tied the knot is expected to lead the line for the Asian All Stars in the point guard role.

The 22-year-old Tian Yuen meanwhile is one of the most promising youngsters in Malaysia and the 2.02m forward has been with the Dragons since 2010.

Besides the duo, Cameroonian Chris Kuete who regularly competes for Farmcochem in the Malaysian National Basketball League (MNBL), picking up the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award this year, is also included in the squad.

The other players in the Asian selection are 2.29m centre Jaber Rouzbahani from Iran, Jun Isawa from Japan, four-time Philippines Basketball Association (PBA) All Star Rommel Adducul, five-time PBA Slam Dunk champion Nino Canaleta, Taiwanese Yang Yu Ming, Nigeria’s Folarin Deola D’brown and New Zealand Slam Dunk King Cameron Stuart.

The PBAA team will feature a mix of retired former NBA stars such as Dennis Rodman, Jason Williams, Michael Finley, Doug Christie, Latrell Sprewell, Zendon Hamilton, Charoy Bentley, John Humphrey and Anthony Pimble.

They will have also Guy Dupuy, a 26-year-old Frenchman who is widely considered one of the best dunkers in the world.

Meanwhile astute veteran coach Goh Cheng Huat, who masterminded Malacca’s Agong Cup win and the Kelantan Warriors’ success at the MNBL, will coach the Asian selection. He will be assisted by national coach Paul Advincula.

“The main concern now is that most of the Asian players have not arrived in Malaysia and they will probably only have two practice sessions before the actual game,” said Cheng Huat.

“But I’m not too worried about team rapport because these are star players from their respective regions and they know the game and their own abilities well and are easy to work with.”

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