Brixton was transformed into a mecca for ball-bouncing and slam-dunking last weekend as Nike brought the World Basketball Festival to town.
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For one day only, Brixton hotspot Windrush Square was transformed as hoops sprung from the ground and pop-up bleachers were packed out with South London locals. The morning was spent with Nike poster-boys Herman Harried, Luol Deng and Scottie Pippen training-up the future bright-lights of British basketball. Then once the kids were bounce savvy and slam-dunk proficient the big – we mean really, really big – boys and girls arrived. With representatives from Brixton Topcats, London School of Basketball and Choice FM all present, more than thirty, three man teams battled it out on the courts in a knock-out tournament. And as if that wasn’t enough to keep spectators on the balls of their feet, five of the UK’s most high-flying, slam-dunkers when head-to-head in a dunk-off. As the al fresco activities rounded off with a match between the far-from-home NYC Nike Team and an all-star, all-supreme homegrown squad, revellers saw in the evening at The O2 Academy Brixton where festivities continued. As our Wimbledon hopes wane and our footballing finest are busy frolicking in Ibiza, perhaps Team GB should stock up on spinach, strap on our high-tops and reach for the hoop? Let’s just do it.
Text: Sean Baker