New Gliders coach heads raft of appointments

New Gliders coach heads raft of appointments

Basketball Australia is pleased to announce the new coaching appointments to its highly successful wheelchair basketball program.

Perth's John Triscari will be the new head coach of Australia's women's wheelchair basketball team, the Gliders, replacing outgoing coach Gerry Hewson.

Triscari has been the Head Coach of the Western Stars in the Women's National Wheelchair Basketball League (WNWBL), who were runners up in last year's competition. He has also coached at a state level with the Western Australian Under-16, Under-18 and Under-20 teams. He has also been part of the National Intensive Training Centre Program (NITCP) for many years in the West and has been involved with the very successful Perth Wheelcats, the champion men's NWBL team.

Joining the Bronze Medal winning Gliders staff as assistant coaches will be Ben Osborne and Matt Dunstan. Osborne is currently in the final year of an Australian Sports Commission Wheelchair Basketball Scholarship Coach appointment with Basketball Australia.

A former National Basketball League player and State League coach in Adelaide, Osborne is currently the assistant coach of the Under-23 Australian wheelchair team that will compete in the World Championship in Paris in July.

Melbourne's Matt Dunstan is currently employed by Basketball Victoria managing their Disability Basketball program. He has been the technical assistant coach for the Gliders over the past three years and will also be responsible for the development of a number of scouting and video analysis programs for wheelchair basketball.

Rounding out the Gliders staff roles will be team physiotherapist Emma Whiteside.

A team manager is yet to be appointed.

Those coaches have already begun work in their new roles, with the opening Gliders camp for 2009 concluding today at the AIS in Canberra. Athletes attending the camp included Melanie Domaschenz, Leanne Del Toso, Clare Burzynski, Amber Merritt, Sarah Vinci, Melanie Hall, Kylie Gauci, Katie Hill, Tina McKenzie and Jessica Pellow.

Missing from the camp were Beijing Paralympics bronze medallists Shelley Chaplin, Bridie Kean, Kathleen O'Kelly-Kennedy and Cobi Crispin, who are currently in the US studying and enjoying the opportunity to experience wheelchair basketball on a daily basis at University.

The gliders open their 2009 international program in February at the Osaka Cup in Japan where they will compete against Canada, the USA and the host nation.

Australia's men's wheelchair basketball team will retain the same staff that led them to a Gold Medal at the Paralympic Games in Beijing after all incumbents were-appointed by the BA Board.

Ben Ettridge will once again head up the Rollers staff as head coach and will be supported by Craig Friday as Assistant Coach. Kelvin Browner remains the team manager and Ian Lowther will be the physiotherapist.

The Rollers will have a camp in February in advance of the Paralympic Cup to be held in Manchester in May.