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A holistic and rational approach

Five coaches are in the running for the Malta job. Photo: Matthew Mirabelli

Five coaches are in the running for the Malta job. Photo: Matthew Mirabelli

An ASA-appointed committee is currently in the process of selecting a national waterpolo team coach to guide the fortunes of our top representative side for the next two years. Five candidates have applied to take up this responsibility.

According to the association information is being sought from the applicants about their ‘vision for the development of the team over the next five years’ as well as ‘the preparation plan for the team’s commitments during 2013’ in the context of the 2014 Euro Championships.

The build-up towards the forthcoming qualification round group matches of these championships is a matter to be dealt with immediately.

Although these matches have been provisionally scheduled, starting from December, LEN is understood to be revising the format of this preliminary stage which initially has grouped Malta with Spain and Ukraine.

In general, the coach is to devise a strategy for future international commitments over a long time-frame.

This requirement was spelt out clearly by the ASA in the terms of reference. The rationale behind this strategy is obvious. Long-term objectives are the keys to efficiency and eventually positive results.

Naturally, the association must have the funds to realise these goals.

Financial allocations for training schedules, build-up matches at home and abroad, training camps, other related technical matters and last but not least the remuneration of the coach, spring immediately to mind.

The ASA will definitely lay the groundwork for a sound pro-jection in terms of finances.

Which leads to the main point – that of rationalising the coach-related expenses, including his pay packet and terms of engagement.

Starting with the latter, perhaps the ASA could re-draft the two-year term and include an option to renew the engagement after one year depending on performance.

Moreover, the chosen person should preferably not be engaged by a local club, a factor which would provide the coach with ample time to conduct training sessions and do scouting duties when attending as many matches as possible.

The engagement could also be on a two-tier basis, with the job divided over two time-frames – the intensive phase, leading up to the competitive matches, and the longer pre-liminary period, which should have the coach overseeing the less intensive training sessions held on fewer occasions during the off-season.

Remuneration could be based accordingly, thus rendering the financial burden less heavy.

Educational factors in the shape of coaching seminars, the role of the coach in following closely the players in the junior teams, and other related duties could also be looked into.

In this way, the engagement of the national team coach will be based on a holistic approach and thus make for more rationality.

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