China beat India 97-57 on Sunday at the BRICS Games in Guangzhou, the capital city of Guangdong province. Coach Du Feng (red) and player Han Dejun speaks at a press conference. [Photo: China Plus/Fu Yu]
Du Feng has made a successful debut as coach of the Chinese basketball team at the BRICS Games - a 97-57 thrashing of India. Despite the easy victory, Du says there are still things he needs to work on with this new team.
CRI's Fu Yu has more from the venue in Guangzhou.
This is Du Feng's first competitive game in charge since the basketball reform in China.
Du gives himself a 7 on a scale of one to ten for his debut.
Coaching the "Blue Team", Du is generally happy about his players' performances but thinks they could have done even better.
He blames a lack of experience in inter-continental basketball for the team's faltering in the second quarter where India had a 10-0 (ten-nothing) run and closed the gap to 3 points.
"We won the game but we also noticed some problems within the team. All our players, except for Liu Xiaoyu, have never played in inter-continental tournaments for neither clubs nor youth teams. This is a good opportunity for them but we barely had time to train together after the international break. We only had a very short time to prepare for the BRICS Games and we had to find ways to be aggressive. The boys did quite well today, but some details still need to be improved, and that is what we will be working on next."
With Yi Jinalian and Guo Ailun sitting out the Games, Han Dejun was the biggest name on the team. He scored 10 points and had a good game. He admits there needs to be more chemistry between the team members.
China beat India 97-57 on Sunday at the BRICS Games in Guangzhou. [Photo: Southcn.com]
"This is the first time for me to play in such a tournament and I'm not completely tuned up to it. I had about 2 weeks with the team, which is not a very long time. I know something about my teammates from playing against them in the CBA but playing alongside them is different. We are still trying to get a feel of each others' rythm."
Coach Du Feng cares more about what they will be doing rather than what they will achieve at the BRICS Games.
"It's a pleasure for me and my players to participate in the first BRICS Games on home soil, especially in the city of Guangzhou which I know so well. We have no pressure about the results, we just want to have a good time and learn from stronger teams. It is the reason why we are competing in the first place. We don't think about the results at all, we'd rather find problems and solve them."
The team has 2 more games to work on that. China will next take on Russia and South Africa in the next couple of days.
China established two national teams under the reform initiated by new Basketball Association president Yao Ming. The teams are headed by Du Feng and Li Nan respectively.
The teams will train and compete independently before they unite for next year's World Cup and the Tokyo Olympic Games in 2020.
For CRI, this is Fu Yu in Guangzhou.