Essex & Herts Leopards have announced their first signing ahead of the 2019/20 season with the return of forward Chuck Duru. It will 6’3″ Duru’s second season with the Big Cats having joined last September after a two-year spell with Division One rivals Hemel Storm.
Duru began his career at Barnet Bulldogs playing for their under-16 and under-18 teams before joining Hackney Community College Basketball Academy. He played in the US at Southern Tech Prep Academy for a season, before returning to study and play with Team Newcastle University in Division Four followed by a a season with Team Northumbria in Division One.
“I am thrilled to be re-signing with the Leopards for the 19/20 season” said Duru. “I enjoyed last season so re-signing with the club was a no-brainier, particularly given the work being done behind the scenes and the new partnership with Oaklands. I look forward to pre-season and beginning the new campaign!”
Coach Thomas Baker is pleased to be bringing the small forward back to the Leopards: “Re-signing Chuck was important to the continued growth that we are planning for this season” he said. “Chuck was influential both on and off the court and having had chats with him since; I know this is a great decision from us as it will ensure some continuity from last season.
“I am looking forward to working with Chuck again, his commitment to what are trying to achieve is unwavering and it’s refreshing to have that from a player. This season is going to be huge for the club to establish themselves as playoff contenders again and the signing of Chuck certainly helps us do that.”