SEPTEMBER 19 - FRENCHMAN Patrick Roux (pictured) has today been appointed by the British Judo Association (BJA) in the newly created role of head coach as the sport seeks to end a run of Olympics without a medal in London 2012.
It is expected to be the first of a series of appointments of top foreign coaches in British sport as it begins its preparations for the Olympics being staged in London for the first time for 64 years.
Dutchman Charles van Commenee will be officially unveiled as the new head coach of UK Athletics in a press conference at a Heathrow hotel next Tuesday, as first reported by insidethegames last month.
The 46-year-old Roux, fifth in the men's extra-lightweight category at the 1988 Olympics in Seoul, will hold the overall responsibility for coaching at the controversial full-time British Judo Performance Institute, which is due to be established in Dartford.
Britain has not won an Olympic judo medal since Kate Howey claimed the silver at the Sydney Games in 2000.
In the same period, France have won 12 Olympic judo medals, including two gold.
Roux will officially take up his post in January 2009; however he is currently working part-time in the new position alongside his current role at the University of Bath, where he has been based for a year as a teaching and coaching fellow in Judo Performance.
He was previously the assistant technical director at the French Judo Federation, a position he held for seven years, where he was responsible for the development of the coaches for of the national regional training centres.
During this time he oversaw the framework for the French regional judo training centres [Poles Espoirs], defining different concepts and processes for the development, coaching and training methods of cadet, junior, senior players.
Between 1991 and 1998 he was the national coach of the French men’s junior team.
Based at INSEP, the French National Sports Centre, he coached players including Darcel Yandzi, Gylsain Lemaire, Frederic Demontfaucon and Larbi Benboudaoud, who went on to win world, European and Olympic medals.
Roux has also been the personal coach to competitors such as Christophe Gagliano, the 1996 Olympic bronze medallist, and Yacine Douma, the 2002 European champion.
He said: “It is great chance for me to share my experience about the judo training methodology.
"Over the past few years in France we had some interesting innovations to develop more specific judo training content.
“I am excited to meet all the coaches who will be involved for London 2012 and to share my vision with them.
"I can already tell that we will have to increase the density [quality/quantity] of the training content, especially for the randori.
"I am also concerned about the pathway for the cadets, juniors, -23 seniors, seniors.
"Working with the club coaches we can improve the foundation of the performance network."
Margaret Hicks, the performance director said: “I am very pleased that we have been able to appoint Patrick as the new head coach for British Judo.
"Patrick will lead a team of world class coaching and support staff, whom we intend to recruit, to ensure players have the best development and preparation to win Olympic and Paralympic medals in London 2012.
“He will be instrumental in helping to build the performance systems needed to deliver consistent medal success in future Games.
"Patrick will be an inspiration to all those players who have ambitions to be the very best, as well as for those coaches who want to develop their technical and coaching expertise”.
Densign White, the chairman of the BJA, said: "We are delighted to have attracted a head coach of the calibre of Patrick Roux. "Patrick is universally recognised as one of the great thinkers in the judo world and I am confident the coaching systems he will put in place will be world leading.
“Patrick has been a star performer in the French judo system for many years and the success of that system speaks for itself. "We are now in a position to radically change the way we deliver performance judo with cutting edge technical mind at the helm.”