Caroline Matthews and Lee Coulson have been appointed Head Coaches as Wales Wheelchair Basketball begins a bid to compete at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
Mathews will lead the men’s and Coulson the women’s as the 3×3 teams look to be represented in Birmingham in three years time.
The duo have been appointed until 2021 with support from Disability Sport Wales and British Wheelchair Basketball.
“I’m absolutely delighted to have been appointed as WWBA 3 x 3 Men’s Head Coach,” said Matthews, who was awarded an MBE for services to wheelchair basketball in the New Year’s Honours.
”This is an extremely exciting time for Welsh wheelchair basketball as we begin to prepare for Commonwealth Games 2022, and it’s a privilege to be part of that process.”
Coulson said: “This appointment is an absolute honour. Having coached 3 x 3 basketball in the running game for a number of years, I’m excited to explore the format in wheelchair basketball.
“The opportunity to do this as Head Coach of the National women’s team, uniting players across Wales, is a privilege”
Birmingham will be the first time wheelchair basketball has been part of the Games using the 3×3 format.
Wheelchair basketball is usually played in team of five in Wales, but the WWBA is keen to develop the 3-3 format and the Head Coaches will be looking to identify and develop talent.
“WWBA is a young but ambitious organisation,” said chair Lou Englefield.
“We appreciate that representation at Commonwealth Games will require qualification, but we want to maximise our chances of achieving that.
“We are lucky to have some extremely talented players in Wales, including the current captain of the GB men’s squad, Phil Pratt”
WWBA will launch the talent programme by holding a 3×3 Wheelchair Basketball Talent Identification and Mini Tournament event on January 27 in Aberystwyth.
The event will be open to any players who would like to be considered for the 3 x 3 National Teams.
To participate in the day, players must:
• Be at least 14 years of age
• Have been born in Wales or have lived in Wales for at least 5 years or have one parent who was born in Wales
WWBA hope the event will give the 3×3 Head Coaches their first opportunity to identify talented athletes for the squad which will train towards the 2022 Commonwealth Games whilst beginning the development of the new 3 x 3 format within Welsh clubs.
Players can register online here: https://wwba3x3.eventbrite.co.uk/