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connecting our Jewish community through sport and wellbeing



Press Release 


15 December 2020


Team Australia take big step on road to Maccabiah 21 with team managers and coaches inductions

Maccabi Team Australia has taken a big step in its preparations for the 21st Maccabiah Games in 2022 after the Australian management conducted induction sessions for team managers and coaches in Melbourne and Sydney in late November and early December.

After a thorough and professional recruitment process, the induction session provided an opportunity for all recently appointed team managers and coaches to get up to date with all available information about the Games with just over 18 months until they commence, and nominations now open for athletes.

Head of Games Operations and Sport, Sam Gamsu commended the quality of team managers and coaches who have committed to the Australian team and explained they will help provide a top-class experience for all athletes.

“I believe it speaks volumes for Maccabiah, for what we do and how we do it that we are able to attract such quality volunteers, and I thank you,” said Gamsu.

Among the coaching appointments are former A-League and Central Coast Mariners manager, Phil Moss, dual Basketball Olympian, Jason Smith, Melbourne Tigers Hall of Famer, Warrick Giddey, and NBL players, Indiana Faithfull and Thomas Garlepp.

Head of Maccabi Australia’s Delegation, Barry Smorgon, was also delighted that many of the team managers and coaches who nominated for Maccabiah before it was postponed due to COVID-19 have now been appointed for the re-scheduled Games in 2022.

“We are delighted to see so many of the people who had previously nominated have come back again for the Games in 2022. It shows their commitment to Maccabi and Maccabiah,” said Smorgon.

Smorgon emphasised that the priority of the coaches, team managers and senior management team is to ensure the athletes have the best possible Maccabiah experience and preparations for the Games. 

“Our collective responsibility is to manage or coach the athletes to ensure that they perform to the utmost of their ability and have the time of their lives,” said Smorgon is his opening address at the Melbourne team managers and coaches induction.

To help inspire athletes to nominate for Maccabiah, the Australian management team also announced four high-achieving Jewish Australian athletes who will serve as ambassadors and mentors for the Australian team.

They are: legendary Australian domestic cricketer Michael Klinger, Commonwealth Games racewalker Gold Medallist, Jemima Montag, champion Paralympian swimmer, Matt Levy, and Sydney FC footballer, Jordi Swibel.

A key consideration for the Australian management team is the impact COVID-19 may have on Maccabiah in 2022. 

Gamsu explained that all necessary precautions will be taken ahead of the Games.

He also added, “we will follow best medical practice in relation to Covid 19. A safe and effective vaccine will be a game changer.”

“Contact sport is on for Juniors and Over 18s as well, and we believe on the current trajectory our trials will be able to go ahead as normal. If not, we will have to adapt to that.”

For family and friends of the Australian team who will be unable to attend Maccabiah, Gamsu explained the new ways fans will be able to stream Maccabiah sports from the comfort of their home.

“In Israel, they are putting up cameras in all the stadiums, so there is going to be streaming of all the events, and the Maccabiah EventsAIR App will also allow the people at home to keep up to date”.

Gamsu also provided an overview of the timeline and next steps for prospective athletes and the Australian management team, which includes: recruiting athletes, trial days and selection processes.

The next six months is guaranteed to be busy for all team managers and coaches as they undergo many trial days for the various sports as well as selecting the teams that will line up at the games.

However, the focus now for the Australian team is encouraging athletes to nominate for Maccabiah. 

To nominate as an athlete now, click HERE.

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