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English basketball club appoints Azerbaijani coach

Thu 19 August 2010 09:20 GMT | 14:20 Local Time
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Azerbaijan's Samit Nuruzade is coach English basketball team Reading Rockets.

The club's official website said that after waiting for more than a year, Rockets' Chairman Gary Johnson was "thrilled to shake hands with Rockets' new head coach, Samit Nuruzade, as Samit accepted Rockets' invitation to take up this crucial role".

Johnson said: ''We nearly secured Samit's services last year but he had made commitments and accepted a coaching position in Gran Canaria, so we've had to be patient. Born and educated in Azerbaijan, Samit has been playing and coaching basketball in the UK for some 10 years, principally involved with youth programmes and player development with England's biggest club, Greater Manchester Youth Basketball Club. He's a great asset and will complement Rockets' coaching team under the guidance of Rockets' director of coaching, Matt Johnson."

Johnson commented, " I consider Samit firstly a friend, and secondly one of the brightest basketball brains in the country. I was fortunate to work with Samit with the England Under 16 group and I was immediately impressed with his modern approach to the game, his intensity to deliver high levels of performance and his understanding of the system within the UK.
 
"Samit has been brought into the club with the challenge of improving the coaching processes that we currently have and to develop a continuous flow of talented young players into a high performance senior team that will be playing at the highest level possible.
 
"It is a challenge that Samit relishes and a challenge well within his coaching ability - I look forward to working alongside him in this new part of his journey."

Samit will meet up with the squad on Tuesday 31 August prior to taking his first pre-season training session on 1 September prior to Rockets' annual friendly and season opener against Team USA on Friday 10 September at Reading's Rivermead Leisure Complex.

Elmir Aliyev

News.Az

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