Sun Fengwu, one of China's best men's basketballers in the 1980s and early 1990s, was on Tuesday unveiled as the head coach of the Chinese women's basketball team by the Chinese Basketball Association (CBA).
As one of the assistants to former head coach Tom Maher, the 47-year-old Sun saw China finish fourth in the Beijing Olympic Games. The position has been vacant since the Australian's contract with CBA expired after the Beijing Olympics.
Sun, a Chinese international from 1982 to 1992, competed in three Olympics and three world championships and led China to six Asian champions.
After retirement in 1992, he moved to Singapore and was named as its national men's team. He returned to China in 1996 and coached several first division clubs. He has coached women's and men's youth teams since 2002.
Sun's first major competition will be the Asian Championship, which opens on June 21 in Taipei. "We will warm up for the championship by playing Lithuania, Australia, Canada and the United States," Sun said.
He said that the players will start their training in late March.
Sun revealed that his team will be mainly composed of youngsters. "I hope to give priority to the young players," Sun told Xinhua after the press conference.
He said due to problems of age and injuries, most of the veterans who participated in the Beijing Olympic Games will be left out of the squad. "Only three to five players will remain in the team," he said.
"You will see many new faces. These young players has little international experiences and still require going through arduous training," Sun said.
(Xinhua News Agency March 18, 2009)