Road to Argentina – Part 6: Interview Namibia

Christoph Kubirske Coach Namibia Team

“A player from TSV Pfungstadt (GER) is coaching us in Argentina.”
Today we are talking to the Namibian national coach Christoph Kubirske (31) about fistball in Namibia, a bid for the World Cup 2019 and his young team for Argentina. Why a player from TSV Pfungstadt will be their coach for the tournament? Read it here.
IFA: Hello Christoph, you’re secretary of the Namibian Association, player and coach at the same time, how are you able to manage all these functions?
Christoph Kubirske: In many smaller sports federations, the experienced players have to take on additional agendas. For me, it’s actually running pretty well and I am doing it for a long period of time now. During work I’m able to take some minutes’ time for fistball, that’s what I’m doing.
IFA: Fistball is played in Namibia for a long time, now you have entered the bid for the World Cup 2019. What are the plans for it?
Christoph: It’s more an expression of interest than an official application. We are a handful of people here and would of course love to host that event, but not by hook or crook. We as an association need international events and a World Cup would be a huge thing for sure. Next year we are going to host the World Cup for Club teams, this is already fixed.
IFA: What about fistball in Namibia. How many teams are playing and what about young and talented players?
Christoph: Here in Namibia we have two leagues with five teams each and there are about ten weekends per year on which the matches are played. The situation of the young players is quite difficult. Many kids are playing at school but after finishing school they scatter all over the world to study or to work. Some come back later and play with us again. Therefore, the main age group are young people up to 19 and then players older than 30 years, there is almost nothing in between.
IFA: At the World Cup in Cordoba you’ll be in action as a player, how do you unite this with your role as a coach?
Christoph: It is right that I’m training the team in Nambia but at the World Cup Oliver Spaeth from TSV Pfungstadt is going to be our coach for three weeks.
IFA: Oh, why did you hire him?
Christoph: In 2013 the Club World Cup was held in our country, where we got to know the players of TSV Pfungstadt, so we have close connections with Oliver and Nick Trinemeier since that time. As our coach has retired after the 2011 World Cup, we were looking for alternatives. Of course we would have liked to have both in our coaching staff, but as we all know Nick plays for Team Germany there.
IFA: At the last World Championships in Austria you were already participating, Namibia finished eight. How strong is the team this year?
Christoph: Yes, this is my fourth tournament now. There are just two players left from 2011, Mark Roesener and I. All the other players are part of the former youth national team and have already competed in international junior tournaments. So we have a pretty young team, the average age is 25 years. We want to finish ahead all the new participating countries. Chile, USA and Italy are all not among the best teams but they are going to be better than us. I think we are challenging for the places 8-10 and bring out the best. We would be very happy, if we could repeat the 8th place from last time.
IFA: What are your final preparations for the title fights?
Christoph: We will still hold some training sessions on our site and gather with former internationals like Michael Baas, who has finally stepped down after seven World Cups. Exciting is certainly the fact that we’ll meet a player who lives in Germany (Gian Rudolph) and our coach not until we’ll arrive in Argentina.
IFA: We wish you all the best for the World Cup and are already looking forward to the guys from Namibia. Thank you for the interview.
Christoph: No problem, thank you!

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