Ettridge Earns NSWIS Coach of the Year Honours

Ettridge Earns NSWIS Coach of the Year Honours

Australian Rollers Head Coach Ben Ettridge has been named the New South Wales Institute of Sport (NSWIS) Coach of the Year, capping off one of the most successful periods in the history of the Senior Men’s Wheelchair Program.

Honored at the NSWIS Awards Dinner overnight, the achievement adds to an already decorated coaching career for Ettridge, who masterminded the Rollers gold medal victory at the 2014 IWBF World Wheelchair Basketball Championship.

Ettridge became the first coach in Australian basketball history to claim back-to-back gold medals at the World Championships, having previously guided the Rollers to the top of the podium at the 2010 World Championship.

Anthony Moore, Basketball Australia CEO, joined in the chorus of praise for Ettridge on the well-deserved accolade.

"We are delighted that a coach of Ben's calibre has been recognised by NSWIS with its Coach of the Year Award,” Moore said.

“To lead an Australian national team to a gold medal in any elite international competition is a great achievement and to win back-to-back gold medals against the world's best is a truly magnificent one.

"The deeds of Australian para athletes on the world stage are worth celebrating and Basketball Australia is thrilled that Ben and his Rollers team is afforded this due recognition of their outstanding performance at the IWBF World Championships.

"We extend our hearty congratulations to Ben on receiving the NSWIS Coach of the Year Award."

The Rollers blazed their way to gold at the 2014 IWBF World Championships in Korea, making headlines throughout the world when they overcame a 20-point half time deficit to defeat Turkey in the Semi-Final, before going on to defeat the USA in the Grand Final.

The two IWBF gold medals accompany a Paralympic gold (Beijing, 2008) and silver (London, 2012) medal in Ettridge’s medal collection.

Ettridge has been credited with taking the Rollers world-class program to new levels, implementing a range of new community efforts as well as injecting exciting youth prospects – including the likes of Tom O’Niell-Thorne and Jannik Blaird – into his seasoned squad.

Ettridge began his coaching career with able-bodied athletes at state level in Western Australia before joining the Australian Gliders program as an Assistant Coach. He then joined the Rollers program in 2007, where he has remained coaching since.