The players are part of the Foundation’s Premier League 4 Sport Kicks programme in Rushcroft, Waltham Forest and travelled to the English Institute of Sport in Sheffield where the championships were held.
Taking on PL4S teams representing clubs including Sheffield Wednesday, Wigan Athletic, West Bromwich Albion and Sunderland in the group stages, the Foundation’s U16 boys team went on to beat Manchester City in a nail-biting semi-final by scoring a free throw. The team then faced Stoke in the final which saw the players score on the final buzzer from the three point line to clinch the win.
There to congratulate the team and present them with their trophy was England and ex-Harlem Globetrotter, Paul Sturgess – the second tallest basketball player in the world!
Participant Kane Smalwood, who was part of the winning U16 team, was also named Most Valuable U16 Player. Speaking about the tournament, he said: “When we scored those winning points in the final we were all so happy and proud to see our hard work pay off. Paul Sturgess presented us with our trophy – he’s a real inspiration and I’d like to be in his position one day playing basketball professionally.”
The Foundation delivers an extensive PL4S programme which uses the appeal of the Club and the Foundation’s strong links in the community to engage disadvantaged young people in sport. Currently the Foundation runs its PL4S sessions in Haringey, Enfield, Waltham Forest and Barnet and gives young people the opportunity to play tennis, judo, basketball, badminton, boxing and table tennis.
Targeting secondary school pupils, the PL4S initiative is funded by the Premier League and Sport England and is delivered nationwide by all Premier League clubs. The programme was developed to support the Government’s ambition to provide young people with the opportunity to engage in regular sporting activity as part of the London 2012 legacy.
For more information about your nearest PL4S session please email firstname.lastname@example.org