Wholesale Changes at British Fencing

December 22, 2010

The British Fencing team have made wholesale changes to its coaching staff in an attempt to ensure success at the upcoming London 2012 Olympics. The main change sees performance director Graham Watts dropped from his role after 10 years in the job.

Watts first held the position in a voluntary agreement but was rewarded with a part-time contract as a paid contractor. He will now leave his post with immediate effect to be replaced by a Performance Management Group along with a full-time performance manager.

Olympic Qualifying begins in April and the new system has been introduced to enable the new management to work alongside UK Sport to offer state-of-the-art performance management tools and processes to the team.

Last year fencing was awarded £2,519,335 (US$3,899,227) funding by UK Sport for the four-year cycle which also includes London 2012 with at least one bronze medal being set as a target. Britain’s previous record in the sport features just one gold amongst 16 medals in total though the nation has not made the podium since 1964.

British Fencing’s chief executive Piers Martin has promised that coaches and support staff will remain in place for now, but warned an immediate financial and performance review will determine future needs.