Dean Rice the man to take White Sox on new campaign

October 13, 2006

Auckland, NZ

Dean Rice the man to take White Sox on new campaign
Friday October 13th 2006

Today New Zealand Softball has announced the appointment of Dean Rice ascoach of the New Zealand Community Trust White Sox.

Auckland based Rice comes into the head White Sox coaching position witha wealth of experience. As a player Rice represented the Black Sox from1988 to 2000 winning two world championships gold medals. Followingretirement as a player he took on the role of White Sox assistant coachfrom 2002-05.

New Zealand Softball board chairman Rex Capil says Rice was an outstanding candidate for the job given his experience as both a playerand assistant coach. Capil added that he believes there are excitingtimes ahead for the White Sox because of what Rice brings to the role andespecially his reputation as an innovator.

Rice, a father of three says the position of head coach for the White Sox is one he has been considering since holding down the role of assistant coach to the team.

“I was the assistant coach for a while and probably like a lot of other assistant coaches I want to see if I can make it as a head coach and if what I have to offer works,” said Rice.

During his career Rice says he played under some very good coaches andwas involved with some great players and learnt a lot from all of themand will now be looking to bring it all together in one package.

“I was fortunate over the years to play under some very good coaches with Mike Walsh being one of them,” said Rice.

Rice does not have much time to get settled into the new role with the announcement today that the 2008 Olympic qualifying series for theAsia/Oceania region will be held in Chinese Taipei from January 8th –12th.

The new White Sox coach freely admits he has a tough job ahead of him toget the team back into the top tier of the sport internationally but itis not a task he is shying away from.

“If the players turn up with an open mind and are prepared to push themselves like they haven’t been pushed before and do everything theypossibly can then I think we are good enough to be a competitive international team,” said Rice.
Rice fills the position formally held by Mike Walsh who had been coach ofthe White Sox from 1998 through to the end of the 2006 World Championships campaign in September.  

Capil says Walsh has made an outstanding contribution to the sport sincestarting out on the international scene as coach of the Black Sox in1981. He also says the decision to overlook Walsh for the position was avery tough one however the board felt the results of the White Sox inrecent seasons had not been as good as hoped and it was time for somefresh ideas.

“It is a bitter-sweet decision for us because we are saying goodbye to acoach who has made an incredible contribution to the game in the last 20 years, and we are promoting someone we see as an exciting young coachingprospect,” said Capil

Looking ahead to the new White Sox campaign Rice says he will be lookingto work with the Softball NZ Board to confirm assistants and managementpositions shortly while also naming his first White Sox squad in the next few weeks.

By SNZ Media Liaison: Kelly Mitchell
* mailto:kelly.mitchell@xtra.co.nz


Cheers Vance
Softball New Zealand web master.
* mailto:vanf@ihug.co.nz


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