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CHN – GONG! China narrow the list

BEIJING (CBA) - Four men now have a chance to replace Jonas Kazlauskas as the coach of China’s national team and Gong Luming is not among them.

Gong, the former coach of China’s women’s team, was according to the country’s media the hot favorite to take over but he has withdrawn his name from consideration.

The CBA Administrative Center has revealed that Liaoning coach Guo Shiqing, Guangdong’s Li Chunjiang, Zhejiang’s Guang Fei and Beijing’s Min Lulei are now the only men on the list of candidates.

The announcement by Gong has taken everyone by surprise.

He was, according to media reports, a close personal friend of Xin Lancheng, the director of the Chinese Basketball Administrative Center, and was therefore the leading candidate.

But Gong spoke at length about the China coaching position to TITAN and said: "I haven’t received any information. Nobody has talked to me about it. I took it as a joke myself.

"The media created this hype that I was in a very good relationship with Xin Lancheng, and it almost became true.

"Actually, I haven’t had much contact with him. The years that have passed since he left (the CBA,) I haven’t been in contact with him.

"Plus, what kind of logic is it that you can be the national team coach because you are in good relationship with your boss?"

Gong had some interesting things to say about the position, and the job that Lithuanian Jonas Kazlauskas had done.

"Jonas is a clever coach who could discover the problem of the national team," Gong said.

"But he couldn’t put his tactics into practical use for the national team as outdated training methods had already formed the players.

"Jonas divided his tactics into many different, relatively easy ones. And then, the teams changed a lot.

"But it also has disadvantages: once your rivals become familiar with you, it wouldn’t work anymore.

"Therefore, the problem of Chinese basketball lies deep in its roots.

"It won’t be solved with one or two good coaches.

"Now the (CBA) Center calls for the ‘Whole Nation System’ that reinforces the importance of reserves and youth."