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SAILING’S MASTER AND COMMANDER SCOOPS TOP COACHING HONOUR

23 Nov 2007

The man responsible for cultivating the talents of a fleet of Wales’ budding world class sailors was today awarded the top honour at the annual Sports Council for Wales’ Coach of the Year awards.

TIM HALL - COACH OF THE YEAR 2007The Welsh Yachting Association’s (WYA) High Performance Manager, Tim Hall from Caernarfon was awarded the prestigious ‘Coach of the Year 2007’ award at a glittering ceremony at Cardiff’s Welsh Institute of Sport in a year where his accolades have been coming thick and fast.

Leading the way in the sport where the duty for developing future talent lies in his hands, Hall - helmed by WYA Development Officer Mike Hart - won the Flying Fifteen World crown on Royal Port of Pollenca Yacht Club in Mallorca this summer.

And as a sailing World Champion in his own right - and with a coaching CV that speaks for itself - the Welshman is perfectly placed to navigate his protégées to similar success.

His newly implemented training and event support structures at the WYA - staunchly supported by expert coaches - are helping to make Welsh waters the ultimate breeding ground for talented young Welsh sailors to progress and succeed on the international stage.

His set-up has helped raise competitive benchmarks and has triggered a positive impact on junior and youth sailing at the Welsh regional level.

He has overseen the development of young sailors for the WYA as well as the rise of Olympic development squad members Dominic Breen-Turner from Anglesey, Eifion Mon from Amlwch and Hannah Mills from Cardiff - along with a host of other talented Welsh sailors currently making waves in the sport.

In addition to his management of the Welsh National Squads, he has been selected to coach Great Britain (GBR) teams at international championships with both the topper and laser classes.

And the results speak for themselves. His national squads delivered gold medals in the 2006 Ladies World and European Championships, Topper UK National and Inland Championships and Laser UK National Youth Championships. In 2007 came Ladies Junior European and National Championship titles. 11 welsh sailors are currently members of the RYA’s World Class Programme at development and transitional levels and a further 19 sailors have been selected for GBR junior and youth squads.

Nominated by Chris Basten, Chair, of the WYA, Hall has been widely credited with the current surge of competitive success within the sport in Wales.

"The success of the junior and youth sailors in Wales over the last five years place the sport at the pinnacle of achievement within the Sports Council for Wales’ performance programme," said Basten.

"In no small port is this outcome the result of Tim’s work as Welsh National Race Coach and High Performance Manager. Competitive focus and meticulous attention to detail, together with longer term vision and leadership for continuous improvements, are all hallmarks of a world-class coaching manager. Tim simply demonstrates these attributes and his successes simply warranted this nomination."

Chair of the Sports Council for Wales, Philip Carling sanctioned Basten’s words.

"Good coaches inspire, motivate and encourage and it’s vital that we recognise the work of coaches at all levels. Tim has made huge contributions to a tremendous few years for Welsh sailing and he is a worthy winner of this award.

"The awards also demonstrate that the coaches at local level are just as vital as those who work with elite athletes. It is their industrious contribution that encourages youngsters into sport, keeps them motivated and active at a young age and instils the core values of hard work, accountability, belief and – above all – enjoyment into the game into the stars of the future."


Other coaches collecting their accolades today included:

FEMALE COACH OF THE YEAR –

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SARAH GINN, CRICKET. RADYR

  • Coaches at club, regional and national levels in Wales
  • Coached the Wales U13 side to runner ups status in the ECB Championship
  • Taken the U13 team from the bottom of the league to winning the regional group in 2006
  • Four of her players were recruited to the England U19 training academy
  • Coached the Cardiff and Vale regional girls side since 2003 increasing membership year on year
  • 12 girls from her region represented Wales in the 2007 season across three age groups
  • Set up the Cardiff University side in 1999. They have since won the Welsh Universities competition and reached the semi finals of the national competition

VOLUNTEER COACH OF THE YEAR – PERFORMANCE

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KEITH MORGAN, SWIMMING. BEDDAU, PONTYPRIDD.

  • Two of his swimmers belong to the Welsh National Youth Squad
  • One swimmer is part of the GB 2012 Olympic Development Squad
  • Also coached triathlete Rhys Jones who recently competed in the World Triathlon Championships in Hamburg, Germany.
  • Travels from his home in Pontypridd to the 50m Wales National Pool in Swansea two to three times weekly before he travels to his workplace in Merthyr.

VOLUNTEER COACH OF THE YEAR – COMMUNITY

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JEAN FOSTER, NETBALL. GROESFAN NR CARDIFF

  • Head Coach and Chairperson of Llantrisant Netball Club
  • The club now has six qualified coaches at Level 1
  • Elected Director of Welsh Netball in 2006
  • Umpires, arranges games and tournaments
  • Nine of her club’s players have been selected to represent the Glamorgan Valleys and three selected to attend tier 2 Welsh trials
  • She has cultivated the talents of two international players, with one representing Wales at two Commonwealth Games.

COACH TO DISABLED SPORTSPEOPLE – PERFORMANCE

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GERAINT RICHARDS, WHEELCHAIR TENNIS. PONTPRENNAU NR CARDIFF

  • GB Junior Wheelchair Tennis coach
  • Took the GB team to the World Junior Masters and secured three out of the four World titles available
  • Two of his protégées competed and won the Women and Men’s titles at an International Tennis Federation (ITF) seniors event at the age of 15.
  • Clean sweep of titles at the Senior National Championships in May
  • Led the GB Junior team to World Cup glory for the first time in its 24 year history in June 2007.
  • Two of his GB squad members have gone on to become senior national champions this year
  • Delivers seminars on wheelchair tennis worldwide
  • He was men’s tennis coach of the GB Special Olympic team which competed in Shanghai in September this year

COACH TO DISABLED SPORTSPEOPLE – PARTICIPATION

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HOLLY HINCHEY, WHEELCHAIR BASKETBALL. FAIRWATER NR CARDIFF

  • Expanded membership of Cardiff Bay Tigers wheelchair basketball club
  • Club now forms part of the Cardiff CELTS Basketball Academy
  • Club now has over 20 specialised basketball wheelchairs for the use of club members
  • Club entered the GB national league for the first time finishing in a reputable 5th place in the 3rd division and a second team winning the 4th division.
  • Club won the Malmo Open 2007 which is an international club level tournament
  • Encouraged club members to complete Basketball Leaders Awards
  • Club received the ‘Best Performing New Club’ award by the Great Britain Wheelchair Basketball Association

TEACHER – COACH OF THE YEAR (PRIMARY)

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TIMOTHY DAVIES, BROAD HAVEN SCHOOL, PEMBROKESHIRE

  • Initiated the Buccaneers Surf Lifesaving Club – the first of its kind in Wales
  • Members have achieved bonze and silver lifesaving awards with many expected to secure gold in the near future

TEACHER COACH OF THE YEAR (SECONDARY)

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OSIAN GRIFFITHS, ABERSYCHAN SCHOOL, PONTYPOOL.

  • Head of PE at Abersychan School
  • Runs a series of after-school activities and has had tremendous success with a girls rugby team
  • U14 team won the national tag rugby competition at the Millennium Stadium in 2006 and 2007
  • Organised overseas rugby tour to France maintaining a 100% record.
  • Duke of Edinburgh coordinator for Abersychan School
  • Played a critical role in the development if the sports laboratory at the school
  • Working with the 5x60 officer to develop a varied lunchtime and extra-curricular activity programme

For further information about how you can get involved in coaching at all levels, visit the Coaching Wales website at www.coachingwales.com or contact / email: