Top Australian coach to run clinics in Majuro

Marshall Islands coaches and players will get the benefit of training from an Australian national team coach, who will be in Majuro in mid-November to lead a coaching clinic for men and women.

Paul Goriss, who was named Australia’s Junior Male Coach of the year in 2007, and has coached many Australian national teams at World Championship competitions, will be in Majuro November 15-21. He currently serves as the Senior Coach for Men’s Basketball at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS).

“With Paul’s visit and his credentials, this is a great opportunity for our local coaches and players, especially when you’re not just coaching but teaching others or being mentors at schools or in community events,” said Marshall Islands Basketball Federation Secretary General Deborah K. Shoniber. “It’s vital that as teachers you want to teach correctly.”

“The Australian Institute of Sport where Paul works is a world renown ‘athlete factory’ which is responsible for the development of Andrew Bogut, Lauren Jackson, and Patrick Mills to name just a few of the more well known graduates,” said Steve Smith, FIBA Oceania’s Secretary General who is based in Australia. FIBA Oceania is assisting the Marshall Islands Basketball Federation and the Marshall Islands National Olympic Committee to sponsor next month’s clinic.

Sec. General Shoniber sees the impact of Goriss’ visit as far beyond court skills development. “For myself, the visit will be very inspirational and self gratifying,” she said. “I believe that no matter how much success you have it’s very important to give back. It's important to help others. And sharing this opportunity to learn with the community from a world-class coach is exciting. I want to be part of a Federation that teaches sportsmanship, teamwork, creates better players, a sense of goal achievement and especially life skills.”

The clinics Coach Goriss is scheduled to lead will be broken into morning and afternoon sessions, with mornings reserved for women coaches and players, and the afternoon sessions for men. The clinics will include classroom training and practical on-court activity. Goriss plans to cover coaching philosophy, practice planning, and game strategy, as well as focus on player skills development, including multiple defensive skills and basic running game offense.

This is the first time that MIBF is doing a coaching clinic focused on women in addition to the men’s clinic.

“For our female athletes, learning the fundamentals and proper skills of the game is important to becoming better players,” said Sec. General Shoniber. “You grow with the skills to improve and not continue a cycle of bad habits. It’s just like when you go to various workshops to update your skills and knowledge of your work. This is the chance to learn to do things the correct way first, then they can concentrate on the athletic side of it. I mention this because after observing both genders play, in the men’s games we can see that the most athletic ones win. But for the girls, it seems as though the ones who are most fundamentally sound win.”

She added: “The training will be good exposure and we want to see women’s basketball grow, for more women and girls to participate in more regional tournaments.” She said MIBF especially wants to create more of an interest for women to become better players, future coaches, and referees.

One aim of the clinic is for Goriss to show local coaches how to do some of the things he does on a day-to-day basis at AIS so they can improve the performance of their teams, said FIBA Oceania Secretary General Smith.

MIBF Basketball Development Officer Mouj Lewi will be working with Coach Goriss to run the clinics. For more information on the training and or to sign up to participate, contact Mouj at the NOC Office, 625-7869, or by email:


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