The first official powerchair football clinic took place in Auckland, New Zealand, July 13 and 14, 2013. Sean Stamp, the force behind organizing this clinic, brought together twelve athletes from the Greater Auckland area along with six athletes from Canterbury, located on the south island. Dominic and Karen Russo from the USA conducted the two-day clinic introducing new drills, skills and strategy to the 18 athletes.
Simon Oliver, the coach of the Canterbury Club and Tim Wheeler, Assistant Coach of the Auckland Club were both very involved and dedicated to the training, absorbing all they could. The clinic was comprehensive, including drills, game strategy, fundamental plays, questions and discussions about classification, and clarification of the Laws of the Game.
It was exciting to see the players’ skills develop over the two-day period and the Laws of the Game become clearer as they played their 1st game Sunday afternoon.
Saturday night, representatives from both cities met to select the six players and head coach for their first national team. They will travel to Australia later this year to attend Australia’s national tournament as a guest team. Simon Oliver was selected as the Head Coach along with six very excited athletes.
Since the clinic, New Zealand has started the process of establishing a National Organization with the goal of sending a team to the next World Cup. Sean Stamp, the Auckland organizer, has accepted becoming the President of this new organization.
Photos can be seen at their Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/AuckPFC
Videos of the competition can be found in the links below.
We would like to thank all the organizers for their gracious hospitality throughout the entire weekend. Sean, Ian, and Jane Stamp and Trev and Joy Jenkin. We were very honored and excited to be part of this development project.
Article by Dominic and Karen Russo