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'Iron Hammer' Lang Ping among 4 candidates for coaching job at China's national volleyball team


08:36, April 16, 2013

BEIJING, April 15 (Xinhua) -- Lang Ping, a beloved Chinese sports hero who helped the 1984 women's volleyball team capture Olympic gold, is among four candidates vying to take charge of the national women's team, the Chinese volleyball administrative center said on Monday.

Lang, known as the "Iron Hammer" during her playing days, along with Cai Bin, also a former Chinese national head coach, New Zealand's men's team coach Jiang Jie and Liu Changcheng, made their bid presentations to a panel of volleyball officials and experts at a closed-door meeting held on Monday.

"We will analyze their presentations carefully after the meeting and make a decision based on their capabilities," said Pan Zhichen, newly-appointed director of the Chinese volleyball administrative center. "Hopefully, we will announce our pick in a week."

Lang, 52, led the Chinese women to five world championships in the 1980s and a gold medal at the 1984 Olympics. Later, she coached the Chinese women to a silver medal at the 1996 Olympics and a silver at the 1998 World Championships. She then spent six years coaching in Italy before replacing Japan's Toshi Yoshida as the US women's coach in late 2004.

In 2009, Lang returned to coach Guangdong Hengda women's club, the first privately funded club in China.

"Whether or not I will be selected doesn't matter at all. What I want to do is to give my advice to the national team, and contribute to the renaissance of Chinese women's volleyball," Lang told reporters after the meeting.

"I won't feel disappointed if I fail," she added.

After taking bronze in the 2008 Olympic Games, the Chinese women's volleyball team failed to reach the semifinals at last year's Olympics in London. Yu Juemin then resigned from the coaching post.

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