100 Team GB contenders for London 2012: Luol Deng

Basketball

Born : 16/04/85

Career highlights

Deng is a basketball icon who helped the Chicago Bulls reach the 2011 NBA Western Conference Finals. He has been with the Bulls since 2004 and made history this year by becoming the first Briton to be selected for the NBA's annual All-Star Game.

He signed a new six-year deal in 2008 worth around £43m, making him by far the best-paid British athlete playing his trade outside the UK.

For me, London will always be home so the chance to play in an Olympic Games in my hometown in front of my family and friends I grew up with, is something that's never far from my thoughts

Luol Deng

Personal

The eighth of nine children, 6ft 9in Deng was born in Sudan and is a member of the Dinka tribe that produces some of the world's tallest people.

His father served in the Sudanese parliament, but the family were forced to flee the civil war, firstly to Egypt and then to London when Deng was 10.

He runs a basketball camp each year for kids in Britain as part of the charity work carried out by the Luol Deng Foundation. He received the United Nations Refugee Agency's humanitarian award in 2008

Career background

Deng was a good enough footballer to be invited to trials for the England Under-16 squad, but he never turned up as he had already earned a basketball scholarship to a high school in New Jersey at the age of 14. He made his debut for Great Britain in 2007 against Georgia.

Did you know?

Deng is one of Barack Obama's favourite sportsmen and was among the first to be invited to the White House by the US president, who is a Chicago Bulls fan.