Tess’s team does a great job

TESS Gerrand’s former coach said the Australian Women’s Eight rowing team have done a great job to get to where they are.
Nanjing Night Net

John Corbett said the experience and strength of their rivals make it hard for the squad to medal but said they had surprised everyone so far.

“The other teams they were up against have been rowing together for years,” he said.

“This Australian team has only recently been thrown together.

“They’ve got nothing to lose, so who know’s, no-one really gave them much of a chance in the first place and look how far they’ve come.”

He likened the Australian squad to a team of Port Macquarie, misfit, footballers, mixing it in the NRL.

“It would be like taking a rat-bag bunch of footballers to play NRL in Sydney and expect them to win,” he said.

“They definitely have that underdog tag and that will suit them to a point.

“The fact they’ve made it this far is a huge credit to them.”

Mr Corbett took Tess under his wing almost 10 years ago and said she showed instant talent.

“From the start, even at the age of 15, she had this maturity about her,” he said.

“She was tall and strong and very mature and responsible for her age.”

And he said she still displays those qualities.

“I have seen the same stuff from her that I saw six years ago,” he said.

“She hasn’t changed much at all, she’s always been very consistent, strong, smart and calm and reliable under pressure.

“I used to always say she had all those leadership qualities.”

A photo of Olympic rower Tess Gerrard taken in 2006 by her former coach John Corbett.

Tess Gerrard and her team at the London Games.

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