No Cheng Chih-lung, the key NT member and fearsome scorer for the last 10 years. No Lo Shin-liang, the most prolific long-range bomber and member of the past two Asian All-Star Teams. No Huang Chun-hsiung, who at 200cm is the most athletic and reliable inside force. CTBA (Chinese Taipei Basketball Association) announced the 2001 Taiwanese NT 18-man roster and surprised almost everyone.
The roster entirely consisted of young players under 26 years-old, with the youngest member Wu Dai-hao, one of four high school players on the roster, is only a 16 year-old high school freshman. CTBA said it's determined to revamp the NT roster and it's time to bring in young blood for the national team.
Players will start practice on March 18 for the upcoming East Asian Game, which will be held in Osaka, Japan in May. The roster will be trimmed to 12 or 13 before the Games.
CTBA did not rule out the possibility to add veterans to the NT after the East Asia Game. CTBA is expected to enter two national teams in this year's Jones Cup, the biggest annual basketball event in Taiwan. And also it might switch to a more veteran-oriented roster for the Asian Basketball Championship in the end of the year.
However, this brand new NT roster has drawn tons of criticism upon its announcement. Most people think, with the young and inexperienced roster, the new NT will have a hard time defeating emerging Asian countries, let alone other major powers like China, Japan and South Korea.
■2001 Taiwanese NT Roster
Position, Name, Age, Birthdate, Height/Weight, Team
PG Yen Shin-shu 25 1976.9.8 182/74 Military
PG Chen Chih-chun 24 1977.3.2 181/74 Military
PG Huang Bao-tse 25 1976.9.18 180/70 Yulon
SG Chiu Chi-yi 26 1975.10.6 182/72 Yulon
SG Yang Yu-min 22 1979.10.22 180/72 JutaiTech
SG Lin Jia-huang 26 1975.9.20 186/85 Mars
SG/PG O-Yang Jin-hen 22 1979.10.28 191/85 Dacin
SF Chen Hsin-an 21 1980.7.1 196/90 Yulon
SF Chou Hong-yu 25 1976.6.15 195/92 Yulon
SF Lin Chi-jay 19 1982.6.11 192/90 Taiwan Beer
SF Ho Sho-jen 18 1983.2.15 195/89 Song-shan HS
SF/PF Tien Lei 18 1983.6.1 201/86 San-min HS
PF Lee Chi-yi 23 1978.10.27 200/90 Mars
PF Ha Hsiao-yuan 20 1981.5.15 198/98 Dacin
PF Shan Wei-fan 23 1978.3.9 195/88 Jutai Tech
C Wu Chi-wei 25 1976.7.31 202/94 Yulon
C Tsun Wen-din 17 1984.7.6 202/86 Tsai-shin HS
C Wu Dai-hao 16 1985.2.7 200/98 Tai-shin HS