It probably wasn’t the start to the ABL career that Ebrahim “Biboy” Enguio had envisioned. After his inclusion into the CLS Knights roster, he saw an inconsistent amount of minutes varying from game to game in his first five contests.
In those five games, Enguio attempted a total of 20 shots and saw only three of those attempts fall through.
“Maybe because this is a different level of competition [than I’m used to],” Enguio says of the possible reason why he was struggling early on. “I played in the Indonesian local league but this is my first time to play in the ABL, so it’s hard for me.”
“Everything is very tough. Everyone plays more physical, smarter, and they all want to compete so bad.”
“They all want to win.”
This all came from the Indonesian-Filipino who has played in the Philippines collegiate level (UAAP), Indonesia Basketball League (IBL), Philippines Basketball Association Development-League (PBA D-League), and is a three-time silver medalist for the Indonesia National Team in SEA Games and SEABA Championship competitions. Enguio has been through some high-level competition and even then, playing in the ABL might have thrown him a bit off track.
But after all that he’s been through, Enguio knew that eventually he’d overcome this slump. For all the experience he’s gained throughout the years, he knew that he didn’t have to panic.
And all that it needed to take was for him to wait for a certain special day.
With three days left until Enguio’s 30th birthday on January 31st, him and the CLS Knights were suiting up to play against the Formosa Dreamers. It was a crucial game for the teams if they were to hold onto their playoff hopes after both suffering 8-game losing streaks. One team was bound to turn their fortunes around that night.
The game turned out to be a delightful early birthday present for both Enguio himself and the team. The Knights beatdown the Dreamers by 31 points, the largest win margin so far of the season at that point, while Enguio rained in a season-high 16 points.
“I was struggling in my first couple of games and I’m still recovering on my ankle but I’m so happy because I finally got into my rhythm,” Enguio said after the game.
“I’m so happy about the results,” he adds. “I just kept working hard, repetition in practice, so maybe this is a reward for me.”
Enguio’s breakout game was highlighted on-point long range shooting. He created space for himself in the corner and on the wings, cooly knocking down shots from the kick out passes. He rarely forced too much off the dribble. It was just a solid offensive game that you would expect from someone of his caliber.
But that’s not what (almost) birthday boy Biboy wants everyone to focus on.
“It’s a bonus if I shoot and make a lot of threes,” Enguio humbly says. “But my priority here is my defense.”
“That’s my passion. I just want to play defense and it’s a bonus if I score.”
Surely enough, cloaked by the highlights of his shooting in that game, Enguio played stellar defense on the opposition. He shadowed Chou Tsz Hua, a guard who would usually lead the offensive set. He covered Wu Sung Wei and Chen Yu Han, both highlighted offensive options for the Dreamers. In one certain play, as the lone player back-pedalling in transition on a 3-1 situation, Enguio was able to stop the Dreamers from scoring.
The scoring numbers look nice — and it’s certainly a nice early birthday present for the 30-year old — but it’s been Enguio’s sturdy defensive presence that’s earned him his minutes for the CLS Knights Indonesia and gotten him back into rhythm.
“That’s my role, I just do my job.”