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Coach Jeong Deok-hwa and his assistants met the players first. They enjoyed an icebreaking session to grow closer together.
One of the agenda items of the meeting was the team uniform and shoes. Veteran player Jeong Seon-min asked, “I love nice sneakers. What about Air Jordan 23 in white?” Players who did not like their sneakers in last year’s Asia Basketball Championship cheered the suggestion.
The tallest player, 6-feet-8 (202 centimeters) Ha Eun-ju, mulled over her uniform size. She said, “Last time, it was too tight to wear.”
Her teammates joked in reply, “You can borrow from your brother [Seung-jin, the tallest Korean male player].”
The timing of their union is delicate. The regular season has ended and the playoffs loom. But players cracked pleasant jokes during the meeting.
Coach Jeong said, “We know we are behind in power and speed, so we will focus on defense. Our goal is to advance to the quarterfinals.”
Three-time Olympic veteran Jeong said, “Our team stands out compared to previous national teams. We will bring good results.”
Another veteran Lee Mi-seon added, “I now have many young players to take care of. How time flies. I will do my best.”
After a temporary break, the women’s national team will prepare for the Good Luck Beijing 2008 Women’s Basketball International Invitational Tournament slated for April 19. The tournament is intended to boost friendship among six nations.