One Year To Go: athletics coach is SJA lunch guest

Final countdown: SJA lunch guest Charles van Commenee

Charles van Commenee, the head coach of the headline Olympic sport, will be generating the headlines at the next SJA sporting lunch when he is our guest in London on Thursday July 14, available as we approach the One Year To Go Countdown for you to ask him about progress being made towards the 2012 London Games.

This SJA lunch represents an outstanding opportunity for feature writers, chief sports writers and correspondents who normally cover other sports, to meet the man charged with delivering gold in the Olympic Stadium next summer.

Van Commenee will be at our lunch at the Olde Cock Tavern on Fleet Street soon after this year’s European Cup team event in Stockholm, so British athletes’ latest performances will be fresh in the memory.

Dutchman van Commenee has been head coach at UKA since 2008, having previously worked in Britain most notably with heptathlete Denise Lewis in the build-up to her winning the Olympic title in Sydney in 2000.

Our lunch is open to professional sports journalists who are not members of the SJA, although priority will be given to SJA members. Tickets for the two-course lunch have to be booked in advance, and cost £20 (plus VAT) for SJA members and £25 (plus VAT) for others.

As is usual at SJA lunches, our guest of honour is prepared to answer questions from the floor, although we expect attendees to respect his wishes if he wishes to make any “off the record” remarks.

The SJA lunch will take place from 12.30pm at Ye Olde Cock Tavern, 22 Fleet Street on Thursday, July 14.

The venue is less than half a mile from Blackfriars, Temple and Chancery Lane Tube stations and City Thameslink rail. Click here for a map of the location.

Places are expected to be in great demand and will be allocated on a first-come, first-reserved basis, with preference given to SJA members.

The cost is £20 (plus VAT) for fully paid-up SJA members, and £25 (plus VAT) for non-members, to include a two-course meal and coffee. Guests are expected to buy their own drinks.

All attendees will be invoiced by the SJA Treasurer.

Contact Mary Fitzhenry by email to or by phone on 07946 545084 (please indicate whether a vegetarian meal is required).

All details are subject to change.

First posted Jun 13


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All details subject to alteration. Keep checking for updates