ATHLETICS: Toni issues appeal for more coaches

Great Britain's Jessica Ennis with coach Toni Minichello.
Great Britain's Jessica Ennis with coach Toni Minichello.
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COACH of the Year Toni Minichiello is urging people to get involved with coaching.

After winning the top prize at the Sports Coach UK awards ceremony on Tuesday night Minichiello, who coaches Olympic gold medallist Jessica Ennis, told The Star the sporting legacy promised by Olympics organisers was in the hands of coaches: “It’s an honour to win this award, particularly in an Olympic year with so many fine performances.

“There’s 500,000 coaches in the UK and around three-quarters of them are volunteers. I have been coaching Jess for nearly 14 years and the first eight of those was on a none-paid basis. It just goes to show what can be achieved through hard work and dedication. We need people to get involved in coaching; you never know where it will lead.”

Minichiello and Ennis are back in training but a decision has yet to be announced whether he will have his contract renewed by UK Athletics at the end of the year.