The club is pleased to announce that Jonathan Price, Ex National League and England Juniors player, will take on the Ladies' 1st team coach role for the up-coming 2020/21 season.
Jonathan, or 'JP' as he's known in his hockey circles, has a solid pedigree in the sport with experience playing in the top echelons for many years. Starting at the age of 8, he played for several different local teams. Obvious talents shone and he was privileged enough to be selected for England as a youngster including the U21s.
Through his senior career he continued achieving the high class accolades by playing for Surbiton in the National Premier League. Then, as he moved back to the south coast, he played down the road at Fareham HC when they were in the National League Div 1 South.
Being no stranger to Trojans in the past, he played for the club as a junior for a few years. The highly regarded coaching team at the club helped him to develop and hone his hockey talent to the point where he achieved selection for England youth.
JP has had a long career as a coach that started as early as his mid teens, already with a strong drive to eventually coach at the top levels:
"I've always been coaching since I was 16 years old and it has been a long-term goal of mine to coach at national league level. Having coached at Southampton for the last 3 years, when the opportunity came up to coach the best ladies team on the south coast, it wasn't one I could pass up."
Now that he is hitting one of his life goals, the experience that he gained through the years will be used to boost how the team plays in numerous areas of their game:
"Having seen the team play and watched videos of last season's games I'll be aiming to work more on recognition of phases of play and team structure which will hopefully allow us to utilise the skilful players for the team's benefit, shoring up our defensive shape, while giving us even more attacking threat."
There are two especially notable elements of his coaching repertoire that he most wants to engage whilst in the role at Trojans. These elements are combination of the cerebral and emotional :
"I'm quite a tactical thinker and will be looking to empower the team to have a wide band of knowledge so that we can counter any of the opposition we will play this year. That being said I can be quite passionate on the touchline, so don't expect silence from the bench!"
Lauren Anning remains as the squad's captain for next season, proving herself to be highly deserved of the title. JP recognises how well organised she is as a person, as well as her effortless ability to gain respect from her team mates, and her calm head to lead them forwards.
Speaking with Lauren about JP's appointment and the decision to chose him over other candidates; she explains how she and the team speedily warmed to him from the start:
"Our first few sessions with JP have been awesome fun; especially considering the constraints that we are currently under during the pandemic. They’ve been motivating yet challenging - just what we need pre-season! Myself and the rest of the team are super excited to have the input of such an experienced coach and quality ex-player."
However, even though they've been successful in finding a coach, there is still one more incredibly important role that needs to be filled:
"We’re still on the look out for a manager. So if anybody knows of anyone who might be interested to work alongside myself, JP and our highly aspirational team, please get in touch!"
If you have the experience of working at a decent level as a hockey team manager or you know someone who is or could be available please get in contact via email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
JP also recognises the challenges and restrictions to our daily lives the COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it, but is supremely confident that it won't disrupt his plans for the team's build-up to the impending season:
"Pre-season this year is a bit of an unknown. We will plan to hit the ground running as per "usual" but with the understanding that things may change, depending on England Hockey's directives. We have multiple friendlies lined up and an intense training programme that will have the team ready for the start regardless of the date."
Aspirations are abundant for him and the role:
"I look forward to being able to build a solid base of knowledge and understanding that will filter down to the younger, up and coming players. This will enable them to step into the team confident of what is required, giving us good depth and cover to the squad, ready for what is sure to be a tough season. Further ahead, this knowledge will only go to further the player's abilities to develop and improve - to me the Premier league is not too far off, and the more I can teach the players, the easier my job gets!"
The squad are hoping for the same level of support from the rest of the club during and between games that has been shown in the past - see you in the grandstand!
We all wish him and the team well and the best of luck for the upcoming season.
*A big thank you goes out to David Miles as last season's head coach for his efforts leading the team through a tough season. There were a number of challenges that had to be surmounted, as well as having to cope with the tragic death of Daisy Strange, a much loved and valued team member who lost a 4 month battle with cancer at the beginning of April .