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October 21, 2020

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Legendary Chinese army team quits CBA leagues

A HISTORIC Chinese team founded in 1955 by members of the People’s Liberation Army has pulled out of the men’s and women’s leagues, the Chinese Basketball Association said yesterday.

The CBA did not say why, but the Bayi Rockets men finished bottom last season in the CBA and failed to show up for their season-opener on Sunday. They consequently forfeited the match to the Beijing Ducks 0-20 and on Monday told the CBA they were quitting the professional basketball leagues. The Rockets, who are based in the city of Nanchang, are one of the most successful teams in Chinese basketball history. Before the CBA, they were long-time national heavyweights. Bayi, or August 1, which is China’s Army Day, then joined the CBA league in its first season in 1995 and dominated, winning eight championships early on. But the team’s fortunes have since plummeted and it’s now most notable for refusing to hire foreign players. In last season’s CBA, which took an enforced five-month break because of the coronavirus, Bayi was last of the 20 teams and won only six of its 46 matches.


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