Baldwin excited by the new challenge as Ladies 1st XI Head Coach

Posted by Jamie Oxley on 28 June 2020

Miranda Baldwin

 

Old Loughtonians Hockey Club is delighted to announce that Miranda Baldwin has been appointed as the new Ladies 1st XI Head Coach. After gaining promotion back to the East Premier League, Miranda, after 16 years as a player, has made the tough decision to hang up her stick to take on the role of head coach. Miranda acted as player and assistant coach last year, helping Juan Pablo Rodriguez lead the team to promotion. Miranda joined the club from Loughborough University in 2004 where she studied Sport & Exercise Science and played national league hockey. Old Loughts believe the appointment heralds a new era for the Club’s Ladies section especially the 1st XI. Away from the Pitch Miranda teaches PE & Games at Chigwell School where she is also head of Girls Hockey. 

During her time at the Club, Miranda has seen the club play in the national league premier division before the side dropped out of the English Elite league and down to Division One of the East League. During this time the team struggled until last season when the team’s fortunes started to turn around. It is clear just speaking to Miranda the feel good factor has returned to the Old Loughts Ladies 1st XI. “There is a real sense of unity, commitment and passion amongst the squad which I am so looking forward to building on as the new coach. It is clear that putting the club shirt on means something to the players, many of whom are home grown”, Miranda said. 

Miranda is under no illusions that hanging up her stick to take on the head coach role will not be plain sailing, especially having to make tough selection decisions and managing the players, some of whom are already close friends of hers. On the pitch those who play in the same team or against Miranda know she is a tough cookie and fierce competitor wearing her heart on her sleeve. With expectations high amongst the players, what is refreshing is how open and honest Miranda is about the pressure she feels in not letting the club or team down as the new coach. 

The Club is particularly delighted to be able to promote one of its own through the ranks from player to Coach. OLHC is even more delighted to be able to support the development of a female coach given that the club recognises the current imbalance between the number of male and female coaches that exist in sport. For Hockey, which roughly has a 50/50 split in male and female players, it is reported that the gender imbalance in coaches, especially in the Elite game, only 10% of the coach population is made up of females. Whilst there is more work to be done in terms of gender balance across the sport, Baldwin’s appointment at Old Loughtonians hockey club shows clear progress towards equality and equity for leaders in hockey. 

While the club is unsure when the competitive league season will start, off the pitch Miranda and manager Paul Homles have been putting their plans together to ensure they are ready to pick up where they left off last season when the action restarts.

 

 

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