Now a basketball player? You must be Usain

HOUSTON Sat Feb 16, 2013 9:05am IST

Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt warms up before the start of the NBA All-Star celebrity basketball game in Houston, Texas, February 15, 2013. REUTERS/Jeff Haynes

Jamaican sprinter Usain Bolt warms up before the start of the NBA All-Star celebrity basketball game in Houston, Texas, February 15, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Jeff Haynes

HOUSTON (Reuters) - Usain Bolt, do not quit your day job.

The world's fastest man played in a celebrity basketball game on Friday in the run-up to Sunday's NBA All-Star game and failed to impress the crowd -- or himself -- with his skills.

Bolt hit one of five shots, missed both of his free throws and totalled just two points in 29 minutes. The only shot the sixt-times Olympic champion made was a dunk.

The Jamaican sprinter, whose East team was blitzed by the West 58-38, said he was surprised that his opponents took the game so seriously.

"The West team really played hard," Bolt told Reuters. "I was just taking my time and these guys were running up and down hard.

"They were up by 20 in the fourth quarter and they were in a full-court press. I'm thinking, 'This is not a celebrity game.' They were serious."

Bolt said he did not get the ball enough.

Perhaps that was because he missed an uncontested lay-in, had a three-footer clang off the rim, and failed to capitalize on his four offensive rebounds.

"I wanted to do more but these guys were hogging (the ball)," he said with a smile. "They didn't give me no chances or nothing.

"I haven't played basketball in a while. For me to come out here and have fun, that was the key."

The man Bolt guarded most of the game, U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan, scored 11 points had five assists and outrebounded Bolt 7-6.

"He's the world's fastest man and I'm the world's slowest," the 48-year-old Duncan said.

"He might not have scored much but he sure looked good going up and down the court." (Editing by Greg Stutchbury)

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