BUENOS AIRES (Olympics) - Argentina have suffered another setback in their bid to retain their Olympic gold medal as Walter Herrmann has told coach sergio Hernandez that he is retiring from international basketball.
Herrmann helped the South Americans win the title in Athens and also played at the 2006 FIBA World Championship in Japan when the team finished fourth.
His decision comes soon after veteran guard Pepe Sanchez announced his retirement from the national side.
"He feels the need to be with his family and loved ones rather than playing in the national team," Hernandez revealed to Ole Newspaper.
"He told me that basketball is only a job for him, but he explained that the national can’t be considered a job, that it should be a breather, joy and pride but he doesn´t feel this way anymore."
The 28-year-old Herrmann, a former star in Spain´s ACB, is in his second NBA season.
He had an outstanding rookie year with the Charlotte Bobcats but was traded in the middle of this season to the Detroit Pistons.
Herrmann suffered an enormous personal tragedy in 2003 when his mother, sister and girlfriend died in a car accident. The following year, Herrmann was voted most valuable player of Argentina´s South American Championship winning side only to discover after the game that his father had passed away from a heart attack. He nevertheless played at the Athens Games.
"I don´t want to analyse Walter´s mental state," Hernandez said."Walter sees it as a definite retirement, I saw him very determined but I wouldn´t be so definitive. As an Argentinian, I have the hope that he will reconsider because he is young."