Basketball: Singapore's sole Indian professional basketball player Lavin Raj dreams of playing overseas

At 2.01m tall, Lavin Raj towers over his peers. The 18-year-old made his debut for the national basketball team at the 2017 SEA Games and is currently in his first season with the Singapore Slingers.
Lavin Raj with (from far left) his older brother V. Hareharan, father Vaithilingam Rajoo, and mother Panimalar A. Thangaveloo. Lavin's father says the family would scour local shops to find size-14 basketball shoes, and XXL jerseys and shorts that fi
Lavin Raj with (from left) his older brother V. Hareharan, father Vaithilingam Rajoo, and mother Panimalar A. Thangaveloo. Lavin's father says the family would scour local shops to find size-14 basketball shoes, and XXL jerseys and shorts that fit his 2.01m, 138kg frame, while his mother manages his diet with tips from the Singapore Sport Institute dietitians.ST PHOTO: JAMIE KOH

Towering at 2.01 metres, Lavin Raj is used to having his legs stick out from his own bed, as well as standing out in a crowd.

Even in a game of giants, the 18-year-old catches the eye not just for his hulking 138kg frame, but also because he is the only Indian professional basketballer in the predominantly Chinese sport in Singapore.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on March 31, 2019, with the headline 'Singapore's sole Indian pro cager Lavin his hoop dream'. Print Edition | Subscribe