SWIFTS MAKE HISTORY WITH WRIGHT COACH APPOINTMENT

The NSW Swifts have made history by appointing Rob Wright as Head Coach for the next two season.

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Wright, who has been the Club’s Assistant Coach for the past four seasons and has amassed 55 ANZ Championship caps in the position, becomes the first male to be appointed Head Coach of an ANZ Championship franchise.

Netball NSW Chief Executive Carolyn Campbell said the appointment of Rob Wright is an exciting step for the Club.

“Rob has a very impressive coaching history at both State and ANZ Championship level, and is passionate about achieving long-term success for the NSW Swifts,” said Campbell

“He is widely respected for his elite coaching ability, his rapport with the netball community and knowledge of the game, and we believe is the right person to lead our Club forward.”

Wright’s appointment is part of a wider restructure of the NSW Swifts’ coaching team, which will underpin Netball NSW’s vision of establishing a culture of excellence throughout its High Performance programs.

“With Netball NSW on the verge of moving into a $27 million purpose built world-class netball facility, Netball Central, at Sydney Olympic Park in early 2014, we are focused on creating a world-class culture of excellence throughout the organisation,” Campbell explained.

“To help develop and produce the best netballers in the country, and to achieve our goal of creating a dynasty with the NSW Swifts, we will be appointing an Assistant Coach and Specialist Coaches to work alongside Rob.”

“We are determined to create a High Performance program which delivers long-term success for netball in this State, and also at the elite level with the NSW Swifts,” concluded Campbell.

Wright said he is hugely honoured by the appointment and eager to get started.

“I’m honoured and privileged to be appointed to this role. The Swifts have such a proud history and I’m passionate about delivering a program of enduring success,” said Wright.

“I see this being achieved by creating an elite training program and environment, and providing the athletes with the resources and coaching required for them to achieve their best.”

“In addition to achieving Championship triumph, I’d want the Swifts to become a ‘Diamond mine’, where we provide the pathway, opportunity and coaching for the country’s best talent to reach the pinnacle of our sport, the national team.”

Wright has already identified his first tasks in the role.

“Our immediate focus is on recruiting the best players to represent the NSW Swifts during the 2014 ANZ Championship season, and to appoint the coaching staff who will play a pivotal role in creating success for the Club,” said Wright.

The first appointment to the restructured coaching team is Mo’onia Gerrard, to the position of Contracted Defensive Specialist Coach. While Gerrard will miss the 2014 domestic season in a playing capacity to chase her Olympic Games Rugby Sevens ambition, she will be retained by the NSW Swifts to provide specialist coaching.

2013 NSW Swifts’ co-captain Kimberlee Green is delighted with the appointment of Rob Wright as Head Coach, and is excited by the structural changes taking place ahead of the 2014 season.

“This is a tremendous appointment for the NSW Swifts. I’ve worked closely with Rob over the past four seasons and can’t speak highly enough of him or his coaching ability,” said Kimberlee Green.

“Rob is an astute coach and a great mentor. He also has an unrivalled ability to analyse a game of netball, and turn this statistical data into immediate instruction, which forms a huge part of the modern game.”

“The appointment of Rob, restructure of the coaching team and pending move to Netball Central sets up a very exciting 2014,” Green said.

Green is also buoyed by the appointment of Gerrard in a part-time coaching role.

“Not only is Mon (Gerrard) a great team-mate, but she is a hero of the game.”

“To have her around the team next season in a coaching and mentoring capacity, and to help continue to build the culture we have been working so hard on last season, will be of enormous benefit to the team,” said Green.

Rob Wright takes over as Head Coach with immediate effect, following the resignation of Lisa Beehag last week.