On Friday 5th August, about 20 players from Hurstville, Strathfield, Hazelbrook and Lithgow were joined by National Coordinator Ros Crowe for a pilot of a “Think Like a Captain” Course.
John and Penny Park have put the course together for players who have mastered the basic individual skills of the game and are interested in playing well and making a greater contribution to their teams.
An opening discussion with all participants noted that when teams played well, all players showed they understood and followed the game and were anticipating their captain’s instructions. Everyone recognised that to play Gateball well, all players need individual, team and thinking skills.
During the first session an updated version of Keith McLeod’s responsibilities of players list was discussed. Practical activities then occupied the remaining time until morning tea. On calls from the presenters, balls were played to positions on the court and attack, bridge, pivot and helper balls were stroked and sparked into position. The post-beginner players were appreciating the need for captains to be concise and for players to understand calls without the need for lengthy explanations! Just before the break a refresher session on slides was undertaken and focussed on the thinking required by the player to position a ball successfully using a slide.
After a break, players were presented with a series of scenarios based on real life examples from games where problem solving needed to be applied by the player. Players were challenged to find alternative resolutions for the scenarios and play them out. The scenarios were different to the whole game scenarios often used to develop captains.
Strathfield is a CNSW Club Hub. Club Hubs are an interesting initiative of CNSW. It specifies a number of clubs as hubs who play all four codes and whose role it is to support surrounding clubs through a range of activities for example, hosting this course. Thanks club hub coordinator Petula for your support of this course by Strathfield.
Once the pilot has been evaluated and a final version produced, the course can be shared with any level 2 coaches interested in presenting it. Contact email@example.com to obtain a copy!