Four of the leading names in American basketball showcased their skills and inspired others when they visited Qatar Foundation (QF) recently.

Stars from the National Basketball Association (NBA) are spending five days in Doha at the invitation of the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC) to show them how Qatar is preparing to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup™, and to showcase how the country has become a destination that welcomes the world, with its commitment to encourage young people to participate in sports.

As part of their visit to Qatar, the NBA guests held a Masterclass for at least 40 schoolchildren at the Hamad Bin Khalifa University Student Centre in Education City. The event was attended by HE Sheikha Hind bint Hamad Al Thani, QF Vice Chairperson and CEO, and other officials of Qatar Foundation.

The class saw triple Olympic gold medalist Carmelo Anthony of the Houston Rockets, four-time NBA All-Star Klay Thompson of the Golden State Warriors, seven-time NBA All-Star Tracy McGrady, and Los Angeles Lakers head coach Luke Walton, pass on basketball tips to their young sporting students, before a Q&A session. A friendly competition then pitted the NBA players against Qatar’s national basketball team.

NBA Stars at QFThese events at Education City illustrated how QF promotes sport and physical activity as a key element of nurturing healthy lifestyles and stronger communities. The visit of the NBA stars also showcased how QF is supporting the 2022 FIFA World Cup™, Qatar’s sporting ambitions, and its global profile as a forward-thinking, open, and diverse nation.

According to Omran Al Kuwari, Executive Director at the CEO Office of QF, the dedication and values of professional sports people, such as their guests from the NBA, serve as inspiration for millions of people throughout the world.

Meeting people who are not only heroes within their sport, but also positive role models for society in general, is an opportunity for members of the QF community to enhance their recognition of what is required to achieve our goals in life.’

Through their time at Education City, the guests will get the chance to see how QF contributes to nurturing the love of sport that runs through Qatar, and the importance that QF places on fostering healthy lifestyles as one of the cornerstones of a strong and sustainable society. By sharing their skills and their stories, they have themselves contributed to the country’s mission, through demonstrating to members of Qatar’s next generation that with commitment, challenges can be overcome and dreams realised.

SC Secretary General Hassan Al Thawadi said they are thrilled to be hosting the sporting icons and their visit is a testament to the support and excitement all over the world for Qatar 2022 World Cup.

We’ve always said sports have the power to transcend borders and bring people together. We’re confident that these NBA superstars and their fans will see the great work we’re doing to make Qatar 2022 truly amazing.’

Speaking on their visit to Education City, Carmelo Anthony said it was great to learn that basketball has such a huge following in Qatar. He said that they were impressed with their tour of QF and Education City and that it was amazing to see young people from all over the world pursuing their dreams.

Luke Walton added that they enjoyed sharing tips and shooting hoops with students at the Masterclass.

I believe the best way to influence the next generation is to use every opportunity to mentor them. Every student has their personal goal, and hard work, together with support from organisations like Qatar Foundation, gives them a better chance of realising goals.’

Klay Thompson said that the Masterclass is an example of how Qatar Foundation is helping students get access to an event like this. He said that the facilities at Qatar Foundation, and the passion of the students, really show the spirit of Qatar ahead of the 2022 World Cup. He added that he too, is  excited to find out more about what Qatar has in store for the tournament.

During their time at Education City, the NBA stars also met students from Hamad Bin Khalifa University and QF’s partner universities, sharing basketball tips and advice on how to succeed in life.

Updates and more information about the visit of the NBA stars to Qatar are available through the link below.

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