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PROTRACK » GENERAL » Gerrard Keating - Vietnam sprint coach

Gerrard Keating - Vietnam sprint coach

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1 Gerrard Keating - Vietnam sprint coach on Thu Jan 26, 2012 6:35 pm

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http://www.thechronicle.com.au/story/2012/01/26/toowoomba-athletics-coach-takes-up-vietnam-post/

City coach takes Vietnam posting

Glen Mccullough
The Chronicle
26th January 2012



GERRARD Keating will put his Toowoomba athletics coaching career on hold to accept a national position overseas.

Keating has resigned from his role as The Glennie School athletics director to become head sprint coach in Vietnam from February 7.

After initially passing up the Vietnam opportunity, Keating is looking forward to being a part of the country's talent search as it looks to lift its athletics' profile in the region.

"I only decided two weeks ago to accept the position, after much deliberation," Keating said.

"The final decision was based strongly around my family, who are very supportive of the move."

Keating has made a strong mark on Australian athletics, helping guide numerous state and national-level competitors, including Nathan Allen and Charlotte van Veenendaal, while based in the city.

"The move is coming quite quickly and I'm feeling a bit nervous and very excited about it," Keating said.

"But leaving Toowoomba wasn't an easy decision to make.

"I love it here and my position at Glennie is one I really valued.

"But the Vietnam position is only for 12 months and hopefully there will still be opportunities available for me somewhere when I return."

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2 Re: Gerrard Keating - Vietnam sprint coach on Sat Feb 04, 2012 1:10 pm

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http://www.thechronicle.com.au/story/2012/02/04/keating-on-vietnam-fast-track/

Keating on Vietnam fast track

By Glen Mccullough
Toowoomba Chronicle
4th February 2012




GERRARD Keating is certain he has something to offer Vietnam athletics.

Toowoomba athletics coach Gerrard Keating will leave his position with The Glennie School to take up a national role in Vietnam.

GERRARD Keating is certain he has something to offer Vietnam athletics.

He is equally as sure his next 12 months spent there will give him plenty to bring home in return.

Keating next week makes what could be seen as a radical career move when he leaves his post as The Glennie School athletics director and successful Toowoomba-based coach to become Vietnam's head sprint coach.

"A lot of people raised their eyebrows when they first heard about me accepting the position," Keating said this week.

"Why Vietnam? seems to have been the general reaction.

"But I've done my research and the further I went, the more convinced I was that this is a great opportunity at a good time for me."

Keating said the standard of Vietnam's athletes was keeping pace with South-East Asia's increasing push for a higher profile on the world sport stage.

The former Australian 100m champion hopes to now play a role in that development which he believes can be part of a two-way street.

"Their athletes actually compare quite well with ours. Standard-wise, there is not that much difference," Keating said.

"They have a good female high jumper and talented female 800-metre runner who would be rated number one in Australia.

"They also have a sprinter with times of 11.38 seconds (100m) and 23.20 (200m), so she's obviously quite good.

"While the Olympics and Commonwealth Games are Australia's major targets, the Asian and South-East Asia Championships are very big over there.

"Vietnam also has an indoor track, which is something we don't have.

"I understand the athletes themselves are very respectful with a strong work ethic and I'm told are a joy to coach.

"I want to take what I've learned here and help take them forward.

"I'm only going for 12 months but I'm hoping to see some results during that time. I'm confident I can have an impact.

"But I want to be able to bring a lot back home with me as well.

"To be able to work with a fully-fledged national program is a step up and hopefully it will give me that opportunity."

Keating said ending his successful association with Glennie was a difficult decision.

"I love it here in Toowoomba and there's a lot more I want to do," Keating said.

"I want to continue working, not only with athletes, but other sports as well.

"The Toowoomba area has a great reputation for developing successful sport people.

"But I think that can definitely be improved on with the development of some sort of academy which can help guide our athletes to the next level."

Keating will be joined later this year in Vietnam by his family.

"This is a great opportunity for my family - especially our daughter Bronte," Keating said.

"She'll have the chance to be part of swimming program in Vietnam under a Hungarian national coach."

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3 Keating overcomes Vietnam doubts on Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:16 am

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http://www.thechronicle.com.au/story/2012/09/20/keating-overcomes-doubts-to-make-his-vietnam-mark/

Keating overcomes Vietnam doubts

By Glen McCullough
Toowoomba Chronicle
20th September 2012


GERRARD Keating had barely left the tarmac at Brisbane airport in February when he started questioning his wisdom in accepting a position as Vietnam's head sprint coach.

The high-profile coach and Glennie School athletics director had taken a gamble on a radical career move.

It involved leaving his job and family in Toowoomba to take up a national position in a country with a diverse culture and a low-key profile in world athletics.

But Keating was convinced he had something to offer Vietnam and in return it would have something to offer him.

Seven months later a homesick Keating is resisting a longing to return home, determined to honour his commitment he believes is producing positive results.

"I've got to be honest. As early as on the flight over I began asking myself: 'What are you getting yourself into here?'" Keating said from Hanoi this week.

"But my mind was eventually put at ease.

"I was told many things on what to expect here, and I can only describe it as a real experience.

"The first three months were tough, but everything is fine now.

"I'm missing my wife, my daughter and Toowoomba terribly, and there have been moments I could have easily jumped on a plane and come home. But I signed for a year and I'm determined to honour that.

"I have no job anyway to come home to at this stage but hopefully something will come up.

"I'm looking at staying here until just before Christmas.

"I promised results over here which have come. It's been good.

"I also came here hoping to gain something I could take home with me and I know I have which is very satisfying."

Keating is impressed with Vietnam's commitment to developing its athletes.

"Sport is a big thing in this country. They are soccer fanatics," Keating said. "The federation here is amazing and athletes are treated so well. They are on a salary and are essentially fulltime athletes. They get maximum support and everything is catered towards them being successful.

"The athletes are a great bunch and are not too far away really from Australians in standard.

"The federation is happy with my input and they would like me to stay forever. I've really got the greatest job in the world when you see how hard everyone works over here for very little money.

"I'm the first non-Eastern European coach to come here and the federation wants to continue going the Australian way now. I'm proud of that.

"They would really like to start coming to Australia for some training camps and I'll be pushing as much as I can for Toowoomba to be a part of that plan."

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