Yao Ming might not play in London Games
All-star center Yao Ming, has voiced out the possibility of not being able to play in the 2012 London Games due to his persisting foot injury.
During Yao’s Charity Tour Game in Beijing, he said, “The chance (to play in London) is very little. The foot injury will not allow me to play so many games anymore. Like I said before, I will quit the national team and the sport one day. It’s what happens to every athlete.”
The 30 year-old Houston Rockets’ center who is still recovering from a foot injury, led China to an eighth-place finish at the 2008 Beijing Games. However, Yao is now trivializing his key role on the national team, saying the younger generation of players should not rely on him anymore.
“I’m 30. As an athlete, I am not the future of China basketball anymore,” Yao said. ”We have younger players from a new generation in the national team. They have creativity and a fresh understanding of the sport.”
Yao was not able to play in last year’s Asian Championship final which brought China to a humiliating loss to Iran.
The 7-foot-6-inch tall basketball star gave his piece regarding the team’s preparation for the 2008 Beijing Games and stated that China is now suffering because of its lack of quality reserves and league development.
“We are paying for what we didn’t do leading up to 2008. We skipped the development of a reserve team and the CBA league and focused only on the national team and the Olympics. It’s like you are killing the goose that lays the golden egg.”
The most important thing for him now though, is to return to the court as soon as possible. He has already announced his return to the Rockets for the 2010-11 season and that he will be back in October for the NBA’s preseason.
“I think we have a very good line-up for new season. Now we have the strength to make it to the second round of the playoffs. But I hope it’s not the end and we can still move forward.”
When asked about his future plans, he said, “If the foot injury does not heal next season, I might choose to call it quits.”
Nevertheless, Yao expressed no interests in coaching when he retires, saying, “I don’t think I have the talent for a coaching job.”