Sprite pairs celebrities to benefit youth

Updated: 2013-08-16 07:34


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Sprite hosted a celebrity basketball exhibition match on Aug 9 in Shanghai to raise fund for youth development.

The event, themed "Be Your True Self", was meant to inspire the youth to follow their dreams.

David G. Brooks, chairman of Coca-Cola Greater China and Korea BU presented all ticketing proceeds, more than 2 million yuan, to Yang Chunlei, deputy secretary of China Youth Development Foundation.

The money will be used to help the Coca-Cola Project Hope schools, which the company funded to build in underdeveloped areas across the mainland, to improve basketball and other sporting facilities.

A star-studded lineup and music performances featuring by Taiwan pop icon Jay Chou and NBA star Kobe Bryant sent the audience into frenzy.

Kobe Bryant took the role as coach of the green-shirted Celebrity Team captained by Jay Chou, while former NBA player Stephon Marbury led other professional basketball players to form the yellow-shirted Legend Team.

Both teams were engaged in a three-pointer shootout as warm-up before the real face-off started at Shanghai Eastern Sports Stadium. Actor Wu Chun, a Brunei-born actor who launched his career in Taiwan and is known for his athletic skills, and former NBA player John Starks became the Celebrity Team's secret weapons, giving the team extra boosts of confidence. The match ended up with the Celebrity Team winning, 104-100.

To make it a memorable night, the mega concert turned the event into a music feast. Led by Jay Chou, popular singers like Ding Dang, Fu Xinbo and Yen-j performed their hit songs, leading the audience to raucous cheers.

The match teamed up with online video Sprite 6, which was made public months ago. Players served as archetypes of video characters based on their personalities and roles in the team. Chou was named "Trickster", while Bryant turned out to be the "Organizer", well suited for his role as the coach.

Speaking of "Be Your True Self", Bryant said it means to believe in yourself, be comfortable with who you are and never try to please anybody, saying "I walked on my own way when I was very young and I am not going to change my way."

"Being my true self is nothing more than doing something you enjoy," said Chou.

Coca-Cola Greater China contributed to the story