EUROPEAN, WORLD, OLYMPIC CHAMPION, TWO TIMES WORLD CUP WINNER
AS AN ATHLETE:
1975/76 – MEMBER OF THE USSR NATIONAL YOUTH TEAM:
1975 – Gold medal – 8 nations’ major international tournament in Poland
1976 – Gold medal – 7 nations’ major international tournament in Bulgaria
Awarded “Highest goal scorer” at the major international tournament in Bulgaria in 1976 (participants: Bulgaria, Poland, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania and USSR)
1976/85 – MEMBER OF THE USSR NATIONAL SENIOR TEAM:
1977 – 4th place European Championships in Sweden
1978 – 4th place World Championships in West Berlin
1979 – 4th place World Cup in Yugoslavia
After the Montreal Olympics-76 during the period of 1976-80 a new USSR team was being built. 52 athletes were tried and considered during this time. 11 were selected to play at the Olympic Games in Moscow-80. I was invited to the squad in 1976 at the age of 17, 5 and had the honour of representing the country at the Olympiad-80.
1980 – Gold medal – Olympic Games in Moscow
1981 – Gold medal – World Cup in USA
1981 – Silver medal – European Championships in Yugoslavia
1982 – Gold medal – World Championships in Ecuador
1983 – Gold medal – World Cup in USA
1983 – Gold medal – European Championships in Italy
1984 – 1st place – Major International pre-Olympic tournament, Hungary
1984 – Gold medal – Alternative OG tournament in Cuba
Awarded “For the best technique (or ball skills)” at the major international pre-Olympic tournament (1st place) in Italy in 1980 (Participants: Italy, Hungary, USSR and Holland)
AS A COACH:
1991/93 CONSULTANT TO THE AUSTRALIAN MEN’S TEAM:
Whilst called a “consultant” to the Australian Senior team during the period in 1991-92 leading to the Qualification Tournament in Canada and the Olympic games in Barcelona, I was involved on a full-time basis in all aspects of the squad’s preparation fulfilling the following roles: training process planning & conduct of sessions; recommending additions/changes to program and introducing/developing new technique-tactical patterns; players/coaches briefings; opposition analysis and game-plans preparation. The team ended in the 5th position at the Olympiad-92.
1991 – CONSULTANT TO THE AUSTRALIAN JUNIOR TEAM AT THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS IN THE USA.
1993/96 – FOUNDING HEAD COACH OF THE NSW INTENSIVE TRAINING CENTRE (CURRENTLY KNOWN AS NTC):
The NTC produced many members of the past and current National Australian junior and senior squads many of whom were brought up by me from the age of 12-13-14.
To this end, many organizational systems & approaches tailored and adjusted to maximize the outcomes whilst utilising the existing logistical and other conditions in a given real time environment that I have introduced and started to implement are still being used by the Australian, NTCs and Clubs’ coaches.
Further to the above, many methodological approaches, systems and planning that I introduced during my work are currently being used by various coaches in Australia.
1991/99 – HEAD COACH AUSTRALIAN JUNIOR MEN’S TEAMS:
1993 – 8th place Junior World Championship in Egypt
1995 – 4th place Junior WC in France
1997 – 4th place Junior WC in Cuba
1999 – 2nd place Junior WC in Kuwait
The above-mentioned are the best ever results for the Australian Junior Men’s teams. Excellent quality water polo and some phenomenal results for Australia were shown at the time in a number of tournaments/matches, and, in particular, against Yugoslavia and Hungary at the WC in Kuwait-99.
1996/98 – HEAD COACH OF THE AUSTRALIAN SENIOR MEN’S TEAM:
1998 – 4th place World Championship in Perth
From May 1996 I was rebuilding a new Australian Senior team after it failed to qualify for the Olympic Games in Atlanta. Despite a very short period of time Australian Water Polo placed the condition on me to produce a good result at the World Championships in Perth to be held in January 1998. That was an extremely difficult period of rebuilding a demoralised (by not qualifying for the OG for the first time in history) and depleted squad. Along with the cultural changes that were needed I had to bring in a number of very young players to become members of the team at the WC in Perth-98.
Even though the 18 month period given to me was very short in comparison to the previous and subsequent coaches, the best ever result for the Australian Men’s team at the Olympic Games and World Championship was delivered.
2000/01 – SENIOR MEN TEAM’S HEAD COACH & COACHING DIRECTOR & OVERALL WATER POLO DEVELOPMENT RESPONSIBILITIES FOR SINGAPORE ASA:
In the period between January 2000 and January 2001 I rebuilt a new Singapore Senior Men’s team. That work allowed the team to win the “Southern Chinese Sea rim countries Championships” which is the major tournament for the Singaporean team.
2001/04 – HEAD COACH OF THE AUSTRALIAN SENIOR MEN’S TEAM:
2001 – 10th place World Championship in Fukuoka
2003 – 7th place World Championship in Barcelona
2003 – 3rd place World University Students Games in Korea
2004 – 9th place Olympic games in Athens
From 2001/04 I was rebuilding a completely new very young team. Despite the difficulties of that rebuilding period, the team displayed excellent quality water polo and achieved good results in many official tournaments competing against the best teams in the World – including at the World Championships 2001 in Fukuoka & 2003 in Barcelona, Olympic Games 2004 in Athens and World League 2003 and 2004.
One of the major difficulties that I faced was the abolition of the Centralised AIS Programme. Despite this, extremely positive outcomes for Australia were achieved in major tournaments with the World’s top teams including the wins against combined Serbia & Montenegro and Hungary (on home ground). At the 2003 Barcelona World Championships the Croatian team (at the time 2nd after the European World Championships held 2 months earlier) was defeated in the qualification round to make top 8 teams.
At the Olympiad in Athens the Australian team was the second youngest after Egypt. The overall objectives for that period were achieved: STRONG FOUNDATIONS – aimed at enabling the team to display excellent quality skilful water polo were created for the future, including the next Olympic cycle; a number of TOP QUALITY PLAYERS were being developed; already by 2004 the Australian team became EXTREMELY COMPETITIVE and capable of challenging ANY major team in the World.
Whilst everything possible was done to achieve better results during the period of 2001-2004 and, in particular, at the Athens OG, I acted on the clear & unequivocal understanding that – unlike the previous stint as the Australian men’s Head-Coach in 1996-1998 – I had more time to develop quality players and team and would be able to do it for at least two Olympic cycles.
2005 – HEAD COACH OF THE SYDNEY UNIVERSITY JUNIOR MEN’S TEAM:
2005 – 1st place at the U/18 Australian National Clubs Championships.
2005/08 – HEAD COACH OF THE “WESTS (MAGPIES)” WATER POLO NATIONAL LEAGUE TEAM:
2005/06 season – 5th place
2006/07 season – 3rd place in the Grand Final & Premiers in the regular competition
2007/08 season – 1st place, Australian National Title winners
Before the 2005/06 season, the team had been at the bottom of the Australian National League competition for several years. It was lifted to the top position within 3 years. The average age of the 2008 winning team was 18.7 years old. During that season several of the team’s leading players were based overseas. If anything, that was a phenomenal outcome given the opposition Wests were facing. To achieve the tremendous improvement in the quality of water polo that the team subsequently displayed, drastic changes in all aspects of the team’s existence/preparation as such had to be made. Not the least one was the club’s cultural change.
As well, during that period I was involved in coaching the Wests junior squads. These teams were displaying good quality water polo in their age groups and a number of athletes have become candidates/members of the various Australian representative squads.
2008/09 – HEAD COACH OF THE SICHUAN, CHINA WOMEN’S SQUAD:
During that period the squad’s training programme was modernised in accordance with the World’s best practises in the planning, training methods of technique-tactical skills, conditioning, strength, recovery and other areas of high-performance athletes’ development/preparation.
2010–2011 – HEAD COACH OF THE SYDNEY UNIVERSITY JUNIOR MEN’S DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME
2011-2013 – HEAD COACH OF THE UTS BALMAIN AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL LEAGUE TEAM
2013 – currently – HEAD COACH OF THE RUSSIAN MEN’S NATIONAL TEAM
1981 – University degree in Physical Education
1991 – PhD in Physical Education
1991 – Diploma in combined studies of Sociology, History, Economics, Philosophy
1990 – United Nations Sponsored Special (English) Languages Course Graduation Diploma
1975 – Master of Sport of the USSR
1979 – Master of Sport of the USSR of International Class
1980 – Merited Master of Sport of the USSR
1980 – USSR’s equivalent of Australia’s “AM”
1984 – USSR’s equivalent of Australia’s “OAM”
My interests include watching other sports, reading and speaking with interesting people – in particular, learning from successful business and sport persons.
Russian, English, Uzbek