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Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Slingers stay closer to home

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As was reported yesterday, the Slingers will no longer take part in 2008/09 NBL season. A representive of the Slingers made it clear in this comment that all player contracts will be honoured and in fact the Singaporean government has not withdrawn its support of the franchise.

Rather, the move for Singapore comes as a result of the increased travel costs associated with the NBL competition since the departure of the Sydney Kings and Brisbane Bullets. Presumably, this refers to the fact that the amended schedule would require more flights to cities which are not as economically feasible as flying to Sydney or Brisbane (two major hubs in Australia).

The Slingers have released this press release stating that the team will be playing in an Asian Professional League, which they presumably are in talks to construct, along with teams from Korea, Philippines, Japan and China.

“We had every intention to play our third season in the NBL and had recruited a team to be very competitive and more relevant to Singapore, with three players of Asian heritage on the roster”, said Slingers Managing Director Bob Turner.

“In spite of the team’s financial readiness to participate, the recent withdrawal of two keyteams from the NBL has had a negative impact on our business model and led to anunanticipated increase in travel costs. When the NBL could not accede to our request to help defray the exorbitant and rising travel costs, the board of the Slingers took the painful but necessary decision to leave the NBL and pursue the possibility of playing in a professional league in Asia instead”.

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