Category: Other Sports Published on Thursday, 26 July 2012 16:26 Written by Jane Almeida
Water Polo Canada (WPC) has landed one of the world’s top coaches to lead the Senior Women’s National Team in its quest for a
podium performance at the 2016 Olympic Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
WPC Executive Director, Ahmed El-Awadi, announced today that Guy Baker (Long Beach, CA) has signed a four-year contract to lead the Canadian women’s program into the next Olympic Games.
“Guy is one of the most widely respected coaches in water polo,” said El-Awadi from WPC’s head office in Ottawa. “There is no other coach on the planet who has had more success in the women’s game and we’re absolutely thrilled that he’s on board to lead our program into the next Olympic Games.”
Baker will work closely with long-time Team Canada Head Coach, Pat Oaten, who was recently appointed to High Performance Director for the Canadian Women’s Program.
Baker has been directly involved with the USA Women’s Water Polo Program in various capacities for 15 years. As Head Coach, he led the USA to three Olympic medals, two World Championship titles, and an overall tally of 10 medals in 13 FINA events. From the 2000 Olympic Games through the 2012 World League Super Final, the USA Junior and Senior National Teams won 21 medals in 27 FINA events, competing in 19 championship games and winning 12 gold medals.
“Canada has one of the richest traditions in the history of women’s water polo and I passionately believe I am the right person to lead
Canada to the Olympic podium,” said Baker, who is expected to attend the women’s water polo competition at this summer’s London Olympics.
“The Canadian Olympic Committee welcomes the addition of Guy to our cadre of world-class coaches,” said Marcel Aubut, President of the Canadian Olympic Committee. “We look forward to watching him in action as he works to help the team reach new heights of excellence.”
“This is wonderful news for Water Polo Canada and it is certainly a testament to the quality of their organization and athletes that a
coach of Guy’s caliber is coming on-board,” said Caroline Assalian, Chief Sport Officer of the Canadian Olympic Committee. “We wish him all the best as he works with the women’s team.”
Team Canada lost a heart-breaking quarter-final match at the Olympic Qualification event in April and did not qualify for London. Baker stepped away from coaching four years ago to take on the role of Director of Olympic Development for USA Water Polo.
“I’m so excited to have the opportunity to coach Canada's Senior National Team,” he added. “I have been very impressed with the
leadership, professionalism and organization of Water Polo Canada and I can’t wait to get started with this group of talented, highly motivated athletes.”
Baker is a recipient of the United States Olympic Committee Coach of the Year Award and is a 6-time winner of Coach of the Year honours from the American Water Polo College Coaches Association.
El-Awadi confirmed that Baker will attend WPC’s annual Growth and Leadership Summit in October in Richmond, BC, where he will have the opportunity to meet with many leaders within the Canadian water polo community.
The terms of the coaching contract were not made public.