Wednesday December 5, 2012
NSC confirm coach Huang Qiang will get contract extension
By LIM TEIK HUAT
PETALING JAYA: Naturalised Malaysian Huang Qiang is not going anywhere as far as the National Sports Council (NSC) are concerned.
NSC director general Datuk Seri Zolkples Embong said that an extension is on the cards for Huang Qiang, whose contract ends on Dec 31.
The 30-year-old, hired by NSC as an assistant diving coach in 2007, received his Malaysian citizenship last year and subsequently represented the country at the London Olympics.
Huang Qiang stopped training after the Olympics as the NSC told him to choose whether to remain as a coach or become a full-time athlete.
There have been efforts by other parties to entice Huang Qiang to leave Malaysia and NSC have also refrained from coming up with an offer too early as they do not want a repeat of the Park Joo-bong incident, where the South Korean badminton coach declined a offer to return here after deciding to remain in Japan.
“We have discussed with Asum (Amateur Swimming Union of Malaysia) and head coach Yang Zhuliang regarding Huang Qiang’s coaching position,” said Zolkples.
“We’ve also spoken to Huang Qiang regarding the matter and he is keen to stay.
“We still need him to remain as a coach here as he has contributed to raising the standard of our divers. We will make him a new offer next week ... we hope to settle it before the year is over.”
There are six foreign diving coaches under the NSC’s payroll in charge of the national team.
Apart from Zhuliang and Huang Qiang, the others are Zhang Yikun, Lan Wei, Zhaowei and Wu Minghong.
Former China national divers Zhaowei and Minghong were hired last month.
Huang Qiang brought a five-member squad to the Asian Swimming Championships in Dubai last month and they performed well to win two silvers and four bronzes.
The team, despite missing the likes of London Olympic bronze medallist Pandelela Rinong and Bryan Nickson Lomas, managed to equal the achievement from the previous meet in Foshan in 2009.
Pandelela is returning to competition for the first time since the London Olympics at the Asean University Games in Laos from Dec 12-20.
Other national divers on duty in Laos are Bryan, Leong Mun Yee, Wendy Ng Yan Yee and Cheong Jun Hoong.