The 2010 World Hopes Team is now complete and confirmed . Eight selected young athletes – one head coach – one team manager and the blogging Director as the nr one supporter.
Here is a link with a presentation of the team that in July is heading to Korea for training and to compete in the new Korean Hopes Challenge.. Looking forward to see the team in action and to really discuss in-depth how the ITTF will proceed with talent identification projects in the future.
My NR ONE fear ?? Is simply that many national associations out there will struggle to identify and support talents in such an early age. If so , the overall ownership – the urge to support the youngsters and their coaches will come under scrutiny. We simply have to build a good talent ID model – with strong educational elements – and more important clearly defined areas of responsibilities in partnership with national associations.
Is it then important for the ITTF to engage and promote young talents in such an early age ? My opinion YES. Especially if we can create a strong drive among our membership – the national associations to work in close cooperation with expert-s on international Table Tennis management and coaching. Early identification and attention from an international body will open up opportunities for the national body to pursue additional support from be it governments or national olympic committees.
I am pretty optimistic that we will get this right.. It’s enough to take a look at the 2009 WHT selection and the progress made by the young players who were the selected few last year.