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French coach Larbi Benboudaoud (46) will be appointed director of high performance. A role that he will assume by continuing to lead the women’s sector on a daily basis until the Tokyo Games.
His appointment has yet to be formalized by the Ministry of Sports and the National Sports Agency. But, while the France team is flying this Thursday for the Masters in Doha (January 11-13), Larbi Benboudaoud has agreed to discuss the new role that will be assigned to him: director of high performance.
Benboudaoud as supervisor
By adopting this name, the French Judo Federation conforms to the desire of the ANS, which advocates the creation of this position with much broader outlines than that of director of the French teams that Stéphane Traineau held until then. “The French teams are the top, but it is the entire pyramid that I will take care of”, summarizes the former world champion (1999) and Olympic vice-champion (2000) U66kg. Benboudaoud is ready to supervise the detection sector and the Paris 2024 project.
“A team will be formed with Frederique Jossinet and other arms who will be added to the high performance project”
Obviously, the first question concerns his current position: throughout the Olympic Games, Larbi Benboudaoud has led the women’s sector, which has sparked in recent years with three world titles in 2019 and five European titles last November. He is also the daily reference coach of some of the best Bleues (Clarisse Agbegnenou, Madeleine Malonga, Amandine Buchard and youngster Shirine Boukli).
“We are not going to talk in the past tense, it will remain the case. It is out of the question to jeopardize that, he insists. But a team will be formed with Frederique Jossinet and other arms who will be grafted to the high performance project. OK, I’m going to pilot it, in particular to carry out the inventory, but you also have to have a little perspective, you can’t revolutionize the thing overnight. “
No revolution between now and the Games
The men’s sector is not successful for several years. “Benboudaoud is not a magician,” he moderates. There could be two or three small movements in the emergency, but without turning everything upside down or revolutionizing between now and the Games. That will not prevent me from having a reflection to develop action plans with the team in the longer term.”
With his outspokenness, Larbi Benboudaoud intends to set the tone. “I have always defined myself as someone who is hardworking in my judo. To invest 200%, that does not scare me ”, punctuates Larbi Benboudaoud.