TT fraternity looking forward to Japanese coach
With the strides made by local table tennis over the last five years under the Godfrey Lothian administration, national team coach Stephen Grant believes that new Japanese coach, Takashima Satoshi can lift the sport to the next level in Jamaica.
The arrival of Satoshi comes on the heels of the departure of international table tennis instructor, Christian Lillieroos and Grant says the game, players and coaches have all seen improvement in recent years and he expects the Japanese to help them make that next step up the ladder.
"The game has developed (locally). Table tennis has turned the corner, where we were four years ago to where we are now it's night and day, so we want to continue on the same trend, " Grant said.
"Jamaica was in Division Five of the world rating for many years, and we have been to the World Championships twice. Division Five in 2013 and we won that division and got gold. Two years later, we went back in Division Four and won bronze, so now we are in Division Three, so I am definitely for it because Japan is a new superpower in table tennis. They are rated (number) two in the world, so this can boost our playing abilities from the junior level up," he said.
Despite holding all three coaching levels certificates, Grant said his time under Lillieroos was very enlightening and he and fellow local coaches are looking forward to working with and learning from Satoshi.
"We just sent off Mr Christian Lillieroos, who was here for six months. So the techniques and the abilities of the coaches have advanced a great deal under his experience. I was with him for the last week and it was a great refresher for me. With Mr Christian's experience and application I have learnt a lot, and this new coach will only enhance what we have started and as national coach I am definitely for it in every shape or form," he continued.
He also added that corporate support is vital to the sports' continued progress. "What we need more is corporate support, everything takes finance and we only get $161,000 a month, so all you see we are doing it's with all that we get from SDF."