The T&T Volleyball Federation (TTVF), under recently appointed president Daymian Stewart, has opted against making wholesale changes in terms of coaching personnel and have decided to continue with Gideon Dickson and Francisco Cruz in their respective roles.
In a release sent to the media yesterday via president Stewart, it was stated that the TTVF was pleased to announce the re-appointment of its national senior/Under-23 head coaches in Professor Francisco Cruz for the women and Inspector Gideon Dickson for the men.
According to the Stewart, the duo has been the most successful in these positions and are best suited to achieve the goals set by the TTVF.
“The board approved the appointments based on the recommendations made by the organisation’s National Technical Commission to the previous board.
Dr Trevor Theroulde was also re-appointed as the chairman of the National Technical Commission. Professor Cruz, a Peruvian national born in Cuba, has led the national programme since 2005.
During his tenure, the “Calypso Spikers” as the senior national women’s volleyball team is known, became the smallest nation to qualify for an FIVB Women’s World Championship in 2017, placed fourth in the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games 2010, and won eight consecutive Caribbean Championships.
Stewart added, “Whilst we have some very good senior players, it is critical for the TTVF to look into the future and focus on the next generation of athletes.
“Cruz is the man for the job!” said president Stewart. "The goal for this programme is simple, to maintain our Caribbean dominance whilst we expose young athletes."
Stewart has also appointed an executive team led by the former stand-out athlete, first vice president Nolan Tash, a former national captain and regional tournament “Most Valuable Player” award recipient.
"The Executive High-Performance Committee will be focused on resolving past issues, whilst improving the daily training environment and the welfare of athletes. Inspector Dickson, the older brother of Tash has led the national programme at different points in our history and was the first coach to capture the Caribbean Crown with the men in 2010," said Stewart.
"In his previous tenure, we established a dominance in the region similar to that of our female programme. Stewart wants our male players to be prepared to grasp the opportunities in the sport (Scholarships and Professional contracts), these opportunities are more attainable by our women. The Board held back on the recommendations for beach volleyball and under-age national teams. The volleyball technocrats are exploring new innovative approaches to beach volleyball and development. The groundwork in both areas is taking place currently. The TTVF whilst recognising its future glory on the world stage is in beach volleyball, are reviewing the structure before implementation. The TTVF is also placing a high priority on its grassroots development programme and linking the development activities to the under-age representation teams.