Road to Nationals 2021: Coaches Announced!

We are pleased to announce the Victorian coaches and two managers who will lead our teams at the 2021 AMMNA Championships in Adelaide.

For a second year in a row, Christina Puopolo has accepted both Head Coach and Open Men’s coach roles.

Christina’s resume is simply outstanding: former Assistant Coach at the Melbourne Phoenix (now Vixens), former Head Coach of Vic U19s and U17s teams and state league clubs Vic Churches, Ariels and Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels. She has also been the Open Men’s coach since 2010 and has led Victoria to the National Championship 5 times (2010-2013, 2016) along with being an Australian Sonix Men’s coach, leading Australia to a clean sweep of the most recent Trans Tasman Cup against New Zealand in 2018.

We also welcome Matthew Cooke as Coach of the Open Mixed team who has had extensive VNL experience. Matthew has previously been the Assistant Coach of the Ariels Championship side, Coach of the 19&Under Southern Saints and in 2020 is coach of the Saints Division 1 team.

VMMNA stalwart Adam Boldiston returns to coach the 20&Under team, after retiring from playing in 2017. Adam first joined VMMNA back in 1994 and since then achieved everything a player could possibly aspire to: multiple Open Men’s and Open Mixed Championship titles and Australian representation including Trans Tasman title wins at Open Men’s, Open Mixed and 21&Under levels. Adam is also an experienced coach, having been Head Coach of the Monash Uni VNL club and more recently Head Coach of the Sunbury Lions.

Previous Coaches Alexia McConnell, Craig Moore, Geoff Taylor, Joshua Schultz, David O’Hare, and Assistant Coaches Shannon Bessell, Brieannan DeJong, Michael Davis, and Tammy Karkanakis – who have all coached or managed with VMMNA previously – also return.

Two Manager positions have also been announced: Esther Latimour, who has previously managed the Vic 23&Under side along with the Australian Mixed, 23&Under and 20&Under sides, returns to manage the Open Men’s team, while Lisa Mynott, who has previously managed the Open Men’s and Reserve 1s, will manage the Open Mixed side. Meanwhile, Sonya Febbo continues her herculean work as Tour Manager.

Further Manager positions will be announced at a later date, as will dates for trials (which are restrictions-dependent).

Head Coach: Christina Puopolo

Tour Manager: Sonya Febbo

Open Men’s:

  • Coach: Christina Puopolo
  • Assistant Coach: Shannon Bessell
  • Manager: Esther Latimour

Men’s Reserve 1:

  • Coach: Alexia McConnell

Men’s Reserve 2:

  • Coach: TBC

Open Mixed:

  • Coach: Matthew Cooke
  • Assistant Coach: Brieannan DeJong
  • Manager: Lisa Mynott 

Mixed Reserve:

  • Coach: David O’Hare

Men’s 23 & Under:

  • Coach: Craig Moore

Men’s 23 & Under Reserve:

  • Coach: Joshua Schultz

Men’s 20 & Under:

  • Coach: Adam Boldiston
  • Assistant Coach: Tammy Karkanakis

Men’s 20 & Under Reserve:

  • Coach: TBC

Men’s 17 & Under:

  • Coach: Geoff Taylor
  • Assistant Coach: Michael Davis

Men’s 17 & Under Reserve:

  • Coach: TBC

VMMNA congratulates all those on their appointments and we have every confidence in our officials to ensure our 2021 Adelaide campaign is our most successful yet!