Lang Ping celebrated after the Chinese women's volleyball team won the gold medal at the Rio Olympic Games on August 20, 2016. (Xinhua/Liu Dawei)
CHENGDU, China, March 29 (Xinhua) -- Changing to a navigator from a helmsman, Lang Ping, former ace spiker and then star coach who helped China win Olympic women's volleyball golds in Los Angeles 1984 and Rio 2014, was appointed as chief coach of the Chinese national team on Wednesday.
The Chinese volleyball association confirmed the appointment in an official statement, saying that the chief coach is a new position designed for Lang Ping, who has been plagued by injuries for years.
Lang Ping will focus on making plans for the team which aims to repeat its past glory in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
An Jiajie, Lang Ping's assistant coach at the Rio Olympics, was named by the association as executive coach, also a new position designed for routine coaching work in a bid to reduce the burden on the chief coach.
Lai Yawen, former captain of the Chinese team at Atlanta 1996 and the team leader at Rio 2016, continues to be the team leader, according to the association.
The famous coaching troika for the Chinese women's volleyball will continue working together until Tokyo 2020.
Lang Ping said that as some veterans fade out, she is looking for new talents and the whole team will start a new journey from square one.
"As chief coach, I will focus on team navigation and fostering young coaches," Lang Ping said.
Lang Ping, who underwent surgery in January this year, added that "with active rehabilitative training, I hope to recover completely as soon as possible."