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Hockerill Anglo-European College student and Haringey Hawks player Saul Chesters makes international basketball debut for England under-16s




Saul Chesters is busy proving he has a head for heights when it comes to climbing the international ladder.

Standing at 6ft 11in and weighing 93kg, the 15-year-old Bishop's Stortford basketball player is certainly a towering presence on court.

The Hockerill Anglo-European College student's performances for Haringey Hawks under-18s, who are top of their Premier League, helped him catch the eye of the England selectors.

Saul Chesters, 15, who is 6ft 11in, posing with his 11-year-old sister Faith before making his debut for England. Picture: Vikki Lince
Saul Chesters, 15, who is 6ft 11in, posing with his 11-year-old sister Faith before making his debut for England. Picture: Vikki Lince

And he made his international debut for England under-16s in the inaugural Tri-Nations Tournament at the National Basketball Performance Centre in Manchester at the weekend, having only taken up the sport less than three years ago.

Saul's rise has been a rapid one, breaking into the England setup after being selected for Hertfordshire in his first season and then representing the East Region in his second.

The teenager, who lives in Cavell Drive with mum Olga, dad Neil and siblings Eve, 17, Lorne, 13, and Faith, 11, who also go to Hockerill, has sport in his genes.

Saul Chesters. Picture: Vikki Lince
Saul Chesters. Picture: Vikki Lince

He is the grandson of the late Trevor Chesters, the Daily Mirror journalist and film critic who played basketball for the British Army in international competitions in the 1950s, and is the great-grandson of Leonard Chesters, who played professional football as a goalkeeper for the likes of Luton, Shrewsbury, Stockport and Chester.

Saul, who aspires to make it in professional basketball, started out at Harlow Hawks under-14s before moving to Oaklands Wolves to play for the St Albans-based club's under-16s. This season for Haringey's under-18s he is averaging 17.3 points and 18.7 rebounds in an average 25 minutes per game.

On his international bow at the weekend, Saul featured for the England Red side as they took on England White, Scotland and Wales.

They beat Wales 82-45 before losing 80-60 and 73-67 to their England colleagues and Scotland respectively. Despite an injury early in the second game, Saul featured in all three of his team's games and scored a total of 40 points.

Saul Chesters scoring for his club side Haringey Hawks
Saul Chesters scoring for his club side Haringey Hawks

Charlie Ford, England Basketball's programme and pathway integration manager, said: "We have enjoyed a fantastic weekend of basketball with the home countries coming together to test each other on the court.

"The point wasn't to crown winners, but provide some great competition for our young players and shine a spotlight on what they are capable of with some of our Great Britain coaches and others here to observe.

"There was a great atmosphere in the centre and I want to say a big thank you to everyone who played, officiated, supported or helped make the event run smoothly. We hope to be back next year for a bigger and even better tournament."

Saul Chesters. Picture: Vikki Lince
Saul Chesters. Picture: Vikki Lince


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