Yao: Ambassador to Special Olympics

Updated: 2006-07-22 16:25
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Chinese NBA star Yao Ming has been named Goodwill Ambassador to the Shanghai Special Olympic Games in 2007.
Yao: Ambassador to Special Olympics
NBA Houston Rockets player Yao Ming (R) accepted a track shoe as a gift given by Chinese Special Olympics athlete Zhao Zengzeng at a press conference for the 2007 Special Olympics in Beijing July 21, 2006. Yao has declared his foot injury a non-issue ahead of August's World Championship warm-up games against America and Brazil. [Reuters]

Houston Rockets center Yao appeared at a press conference here on Friday afternoon, launching a series of public service announcements promoting the Special Olympics.

"The mentally-retarded people need more attention from the society. These athletes move me a lot with their effort and courage," said the 2.26m Shanghai native.

Yao was left home nursing a foot injury while his teammates are on a European tour building up for the World Championship in Japan in August.

The Chinese team lost their warm-up match to Lithuania 96-75 on Friday in Strasbourg, France.