Dawn Fraser says Aussie coach Verhaeren likely fired if team doesn’t improve this year

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Jacco Verhaeren won’t see out the year as Australia’s head swimming coach if the team fails to perform at the Commonwealth Games and world championships, says Olympic legend Dawn Fraser.

Verhaeren took over the role from Leigh Nugent in January after a seven-year stint as technical director for the Dutch Swimming Federation.

With five Olympic Games under his belt, the 44-year-old has guided some of The Netherlands’ greatest swimmers, including Pieter van den Hoogenband, Inge De Bruin and Ranomi Kromowidjojo.

His first big test will come next week when Australia’s best head to Brisbane for the national titles.

The event will double as selection trials for the Commonwealth Games starting in July.

“He’s got a big job ahead of him,” Fraser told AAP ahead of the Laureus World Sports Awards in Kuala Lumpur.

“Whether he is as successful as some of our Australian coaches or what he brings into the country, I don’t know.

“But if he’s being paid the money that I’ve heard he’s being paid, he’s going to have to do a bloody good job. Otherwise his contract will be torn up and told `see you later’.

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Production engineer and certified swim coach. Full-time IT consultant, spare-time swimming aficionado. 2 sons, 2 daughters and a wife. President of the Faroe Islands Swimming Association. Likes to run :-)

1 Comment

  1. Hired to be fired, one and then done, eh?

    Well as the famous old coach once opined: “Talk is cheap.”

    And as the father of a now long-retired but once prominent U.S. Olympic swimming multi gold-medalist was always wont to say: “First is FIRST and SECOND is LAST!”

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