May 6 - Jens Grill has been appointed Badminton England performance director in a series of key staff changes as the Great Britain World Class Performance Programme (WCPP) announced a reshuffle of the organisation heading into the London 2012 Olympic Games.
Having just completed a strategic review of the future direction of the WCPP, Badminton England announced that as well as Grill taking on the role of performance director across the GB and England performance programmes with immediate effect, Kenneth Jonassen will move into the role of singles GB head coach and be joined by a head coach for the doubles programme, which is currently being recruited.
Grill was performance director for Badminton Sweden when he was named head of England Performance in September 2010 and is no stranger to Badminton England having worked in the Performance department as World Class Start Head Coach from 2000-2005 and then as World Class Futures Head Coach until 2007.
"My experience working in other roles within Badminton England in the past, coupled with my exposure to managing the performance programme in Sweden makes me ideally placed to take on this new challenge," said Grill.
"We need to quickly capitalise on the strengths of the players and staff we already have in place, which will be complemented through the recruitment of the two new key roles.
"I look forward to leading on the development and delivery of a long-term performance strategy for the sport."
Jonassen, a former European men's singles champion, will report to Grill in his role as head coach singles GB with both roles set to lead the development of the future strategy for their respective disciplines in addition to coaching players based at the National Badminton Centre in Milton Keynes.
The pair will be supported by the new role of head of performance operations who will also support Grill as they oversee operations across the GB and England programmes.
Vikki McPherson, who has managed the WCPP on a secondment basis to support this transition phase and conducted the strategic review, also noted her belief in the future potential of the WCPP.
"Having conducted a series of incredibly honest internal feedback sessions with players and staff, the will and potential to evolve the programme on from here was palpable," she said.
"My focus has been on reviewing the systems and processes surrounding the WCPP, and I am delighted to be handing over responsibility for taking the WCPP forward to Jens and the focus shifting back on to the court."
Adrian Christy, chief executive of Badminton England, added that he has the upmost confidence in the new team producing good results.
"Firstly, I would like to recognise the tremendous work undertaken by Vikki McPherson in recent months," said Christy.
"We are under no illusions about the challenges we face going forward, and the review of the programme has highlighted some hard lessons the WCPP needed to learn.
"We are entering this phase with our eyes wide open and a strong performance focused team in place.
"In Jens, we have someone who has an exceptional world class performance background and I have every confidence that the journey we are now embarking on will not only be rewarding for the players but will be one that is incredibly exciting for British badminton."
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