Chris Martin, only foreign swimming coach at China's City Games

Updated: 2011-10-20 19:44:00

(Xinhua)

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NANCHANG, Jiangxi Province, October 20 (Xinhua) -- Sitting in a crowd of the Chinese, it is not difficult to attract attention for that tall black American, besides, he is the only foreign coach of the swimming competition at the Seventh Chinese City Games.

He is Chris Martin, a 51-year-old left-hander from Philadelphia of the United States. He said that his mother's favorite player is former NBA star Allen Iverson.

Once an assistant coach of the US women's national team, Martin later took the helm of the British Youth Team and became a coach of Shanghai swimming team in last March.

In spite of his age, Martin still has a heart like a big boy. He would kick up his heels, throw back his head and laugh long and loud while talking at the height of his enthusiasm.

"I can only speak few Chinese sentences. Of course  'wo xiang yao pi jiu'  (I want beer) is one of them," Martin said,  "and Chinese food is very delicious. The food in Wuhan is very hot, and I found that the food in Jiangxi (province) is hotter than that in Wuhan. However, I really enjoy that."

"I haven't been to Sichuan yet and I am looking forward to trying the hot pot there."

Martin said that he had been to China 10 years ago as a coach for competition, and he felt the great changes in China as he came back 10 years later.

On what he can bring to the team, Martin said that "I think it would be my experience and advanced concepts. I will teach them how to see swimming from a new angle of view and bring those new visions into practice."

When asked which Chinese swimmer he appreciates most, he singled out Sun Yang without any hesitation.  "I have never seen such a gifted child like him. I was there when he broke the (world) record in the FINA World Championships in Shanghai (in July) and I was so shocked that I lost my tongue at that moment."