Former national coach reveals interest in coaching job

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By Carlena Knight

Former national head coach of the Antigua and Barbuda Basketball Association (ABBA), George Hughes has confirmed that he has thrown his hat back into the ring for the position of Head Coach for the national programme.

Hughes, who is also the coach of former champions, Flyers Basketball, shared the news on Tuesday morning on the Good Morning JoJo Sports Show.

“I did apply for the job. For some reason, I cannot stay away from basketball, it just keeps calling me back. It’s like I’m addicted, but anyway that I can help, I will be willing to help.”

ABBA, in late February, issued a release advertising the positions for head and assistant coach positions which, according to the release, will run until September 2022.

The successful candidate will be responsible for planning and directing all aspects of the national basketball programme for both male and female athletes at all age levels.

The positions were last held by American coaches, John Spezia and Jay Harrington who led the country to a silver medal at the 2021 FIBA AmeriCup Caribbean Qualifiers in Suriname.

Hughes went on to clear the air on the reason behind his resignation in 2016 following the dull performance of the Senior men’s national team, the Bulldogs, at Centro-basketball in Panama.

“Let me put it on the record that when I actually resigned, I wasn’t really ready to resign but based on what was transpiring at the time I felt it was the best thing to do, to just take myself out of all the controversy, because basketball at the end of the day is bigger than any one person. Since it was unclear of where the association and myself were with the vision, I just decided to remove myself and allow them to have the freedom to make whatever decision they wanted to make,” Hughes said.

Under his tenure, Antigua and Barbuda earned their third bronze medal at the Caribbean Basketball Championships in 2015 in Tortola.

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