It was a half-half situation last season. La Salle College showed stunning determination and strength in the Inter-school Competition and Jing Ying Tournament - the first two competitions of the year - and brought those titles back to Kowloon City.
But Diocesan Boys' School (DBS) won the next two major tournaments - the Panasonic Cup Schools' Basketball Championship and Hong Kong Inter-school Basketball Marathon.
DBS are still in good shape. Form Six student Xavier Yip Sze-nok says the third-place team in last year's Inter-school Competition is now packed with "more than enough" outstanding players in all positions, and are working really well together.
Xavier, a small forward, is confident his team will enter the final of the inter-school contest this year, after missing out in the past two years. "We have the ability to win all four titles this year. Actually, we also had a strong line-up in the previous two years, but errors cost us victory," says Xavier. "We are now a more stable team; you can tell from our performance in the previous two tournaments."
On the other hand, defending champions La Salle lack star players. Karton Ma Ho-chun, Andy Yee Hon-fai and Lo Kit-long, who led the team to their two titles last year, have all graduated.
Point guard and captain Angus Lee Chun-wai admits La Salle's players may not be as good as their main rivals. But he says: "For us, it's not about individual ability. We are better playing together as a team. My biggest wish is that we could show the team spirit we had when we were in C grade. We were fresh and had no fear then."
While the spotlight is on DBS and La Salle, it's hard to forget that Ying Wa College won four consecutive inter-school titles starting from 2007/08, and even though they failed to win any major title last year, they could make a strong comeback this season.
Ying Wa has been boosted with the inclusion of shooting guard Marco Chiang Yiu-on, who returned from the United States in February.
"My family faced financial problems and couldn't afford to pay for my high school studies in the States, so I came back to my hometown and joined Ying Wa," says Marco, a Form Five student.
Marco, 19, says he had some problems communicating with his teammates at first, but now everything is fine. "After months of training with the team, I am ready to play my part. We have many star players, and I may not be able to start most games, but I will fight for more court time in the inter-school competition," he says. "I want to help my school win titles."
So which two teams will battle it out for the inter-school title in front of a full house at Southorn Stadium in Wan Chai in December? It's tough to make a prediction, but you can be sure that DBS, La Salle and Ying Wa will give it their best shot.
The schedule of this year's Inter-school Basketball Competition has not yet been released. But you can log in to www.hkssf-hk.org.hk/hk/sec/index.htm or Young Post's Twitter account for the latest updates