July 21, 2006

CORRECTED-Yao Ming says not worried about foot injury

Adds dropped name in opening paragraph

BEIJING (Reuters) - China's towering NBA player Yao Ming
has declared his foot injury a non-issue ahead of August's
World Championship warm-up games against America and Brazil in
the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou.

"As to my injury, I don't have any major concerns.
Everything's going really smoothly," Yao told reporters at a
news conference on Friday.

The 7ft-5in NBA All Star broke his left foot playing for
Houston Rockets on April 11, putting in doubt his participation
in basketball's international showpiece starting in Japan on
August 19.

Wearing a pair of starched-white basketball sneakers and
walking without a trace of discomfort, Yao said there were no
worries about his recovery.

"Do I look like a guy with a foot injury?" he asked.

Yao's comments followed his appearance at a press
conference launching a series of public service announcements
promoting the Special Olympics to be held in his home town,
Shanghai, in 2007.

As a Special Olympics ambassador, Yao said he was happy to
make a contribution to the Games.

"Society cares for me and I care for society," he said.