On the 12th December 2019, Paddle WA signed a landmark collaborative agreement with the province of East Java (Indonesia) to provide coaching services to support the development of their institute program over the next 10 months in the lead up to the Indonesian National Sports Games during National Sports Week (PON).
The PON Games are run for all the 34 Provinces of Indonesia and all sports and events are hotly contested, these games are more significant to the Indonesians than the Olympics and to win a medal not only being very prestigious but a win would set the athlete up for life.
Paddle WA Executive Officer Rosalie Evans and club coach Andrew Crothers travelled to Surabaya on Monday the 9th December where we were met by KONI officials, over the next three days we had many meetings with KONI officials and kayak coaches.
We also attended two on-water training sessions and one gym session, after spending time with the coaches and athletes we have come away very excited as we believe that Paddle WA under the guidance of Andrew will be able to have significant improvement with these athletes.
We have worked on a timeline for the next year to work with KONI and the athletes which will see WA coaches travel to Surabaya five times in the next ten months and then culminate with Andrew and myself returning to Surabaya and then travelling to West Papua to watch them compete in the PON Games
There will also be an opportunity for selected East Javanese kayak athletes to come to Perth to train during this time.
This is the first time that Paddle WA has formalised an international partnership of such magnitude.
As this article goes out to the paddling community Andrew Crothers is again back in Java to start the journey of improving the Javanese paddling athletes over the next 10 months. Andrew will also be going over all of the paddling equipment to ensure it is in the best possible condition for the athletes, as you can see from the photo below the boatshed is very basic, but the athletes are super keen and we believe we can really make a difference to their performances – so exciting times!