Great Britain at the World Judo Champs 2011 Pt 5 – Where now & Transparency

Here it is, the last post on the subject of Great Britain’s performance in the 2011 World championships. Over the past 4 posts I have discussed our performance, the players, the system and the role of UK sport, now I will briefly discuss what we could do now and transparency.

So what now? Well I want to try and avoid any rumours and will offer a couple of solutions, I am only considering from now until London. Of course I have opinions on a longer term strategy, and I have presented these at conference, but it is beyond the scope of this post.

1 Possibly the easiest and most cost affective would be to remove the current high performance directorate and allow players to train in the location of their choice, Camberley, Bath, Ratho, Dartford etc I would leave Darren and Kate and Dartford. Players have been asking to be left alone to train where they are for a long time, with only 317 days to go could we realistically find and employ a new coach and get all the players to move?

2 Thinking outside the box, you could just move the whole team with selected coaches to one of the IJF training camps and stay there until London, Tunisia for example. This might sound harsh and drastic but imagine the whole squad in one place, no distractions, nothing to do but train for the next 10 months. Soldiers have to do it, I am sure it wouldn’t be popular with players initially but once they are there and have nothing to do but train they might be more positive.

3 Of course you could leave things as they are? Lets be honest the damage is done, if we let the current high performance directorate see out until London at least we won’t get the “if we had stayed it would have been fine” or the “if the BJA/membership/board had been more patient…” but lets be honest, we have probably been too patient!

I am sure there are many other options, these are just three of the top of my head but my point is quite simple. The majority of people will have read the above and thought “that won’t work” or ‘that is stupid” or “Bob has lost the plot” but what you have to consider is that every option has pro’s and con’s and there is now a small group of people (the BJA board of directors and possibly some UK sport people) who will have to decide where we go now. Their solution will also have flaws, some of us will 100% disagree with, other might think it is okay and some will hate it.

Two things soldiers are very good at (obviously there are more!) is complaining and “getting on board”. There is a time and place to complain and there is a time and a place to “get on board” or as it was described to me the day we invaded Iraq – “We have had our chances discuss and complain, now we must stop dicking around and make change happen” whilst not the most eloquent of statements he had a point. I think we have reached this point now in British Judo. It is well and truly time to stop dicking around! A decision will be made by British judo soon, when it is made, regardless of whether we agree or not, now is the time to make change happen! We know there is a shortage of partners so if you’re a dan grade get to every randori session you can to support the team, if you’re rich help players get to world cups, if you’re a physio get to one of the main training centres and volunteer to help, if you can use a camera help Nigel, there is so much help needed that pretty much whatever skill you have you can help. ‘They’ are not British judo ‘we’ are British judo and we all have a chance now, entering the final phase, to make things happen (Bath, Camberley and Dartford (not sure about Ratho) all publish there their training programs so get down there and help).

In my opinion one of the main issues here has been transparency. Players feel many of the selections (or non-selections) were unjust, they also feel if they speak out they will have less chance of selection and many feel speaking out will be the end of their career as an athlete altogether. I think the new system should have a system where athletes, coaches and even parents feel they can voice concern (I am not talking about day to day whinging) and that their concern will be heard by the appropriate people with retribution. Ideally players would feel they could go to the performance director but I think we are a way of that kind of trust at the moment, maybe we could  use a middle person? Maybe one of the board is assigned tot his issue? I don’t know but I am sure the two main issues here have been transparency and coaching philosophy.

The average hit on this blog per month is between 4-500. Already this month I have over 2000 hits and it is only the 15th. I would like to thank the people who have supported me in writing this blog and I would especially like to thank the eight British squad players, three parents of British squad players and six coaches who have gone out of their way to find me at competition or email me to thank me for writing these posts, many of whom I hadn’t met before.




Filed under Coaching Judo, Judo, Uncategorized

5 responses to “Great Britain at the World Judo Champs 2011 Pt 5 – Where now & Transparency

  1. Daniel Lascau, the 1991 71kgs German World champion, is now in charge of the the BJA’s high performance judo programme. At the Barcelona Worlds Lascau was an outsider and Germany’s reserve player in that category but stormed through to take the gold medal. Can he do that for British Judo with so little time left? Hopefully, he can.

  2. He certainly is and I too hope he can bring the change we need 🙂

  3. Trevor

    Listening to Daniel Lascau being interviewed online by Sheldon on the EJU feed from Belgium during the Junior European championships at the weekend, he made it clear that our senoirs need to be in the top eight ranking consitantly to be sure of seeding come the Olympics, he talked with conviction as to why this approach has merit, it came over a sound advice as a stratgic approach prior to taking over thew reins…
    Heart Of Oak JC

  4. I would like to have heard it. Daniel Lascau was aked by the DJB President, Peter Frese, to turn around German judo in 2000 after they only won one bronze medal at Sydney. As Vice-President Daniel completely altered the system and Germany won a gold and 3 bronzes at Athens. At the same time he set up a reserve team for Athens that included Ole Biscof to go through to Beijing and there Bischof won gold. In fact at the 1991 Barcelona Worlds Daniel was reserve to Frank Wieneke. However, Wieneke hurt his shoulder training in Japan and could not fight which gave Daniel the opportunity and he hasn’t looked back. This is a good decision and I think he can turn GBR round in 10 months. Twenty months would have been better or even fortyeight but you have to go with what you’ve got and he can do it.

  5. It was confirmed in the Sunday Times today that Patrick Roux is on the way out. It is not said who will replace him or if the post will be merged with an existing job. I really do hope that Daniel Lascau’s position will run to 2016 to make a real and positive difference to British Judo. I’m sure he can do it.

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