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T&T’s Coker makes Swiss beach soccer debut
National beach soccer goalkeeper, Zane Coker, enjoyed a convincing start to his three-month Swiss spell over the weekend, when he played every minute in three wins secured by his new club BSC Bienne Hatchets in reserve league action.
With the Suzuki Swiss Beach Soccer League’s Premier League on a two-week break for the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup, Coker got the chance to make a good impression on the club’s staff and fans, which he may have accomplished as the club had lost its only other reserve league match.
Two of the wins came on Saturday, one against the table leader, BSC Thun, while the third match, a 7-3 win over Winti Panthers, played yesterday. Bienne Hatchets moved up to third spot in the reserve league but remain joint bottom in the Premier Division standings.
In a social media post yesterday, Coker, T&T’s third national beach soccer player to earn a contract to play beach soccer in Switzerland, expressed satisfaction in his team’s apparent turn in fortune.
“It was a pleasure playing for SBC Bienne Hatchets yesterday (Saturday). Despite the sun being hot and the fixture only allowing us 40 minutes between two games, we handled the situation very professional as a team and got our 1st points for the season,” Coker noted, adding: “I’m happy I could fit in to the team well and looking forward to other victories to come. Hoping we can do the same in the Premier League when it starts.”
The 25-year-old former U-23 national goalkeeper was unveiled by the club Thursday, some months after representatives of the club visited T&T to propel discussions on securing his services.
Coker’s signing comes as the Premier League club seeks to solidify its defence given its unenviable position at the foot of the table following three losses since the start of the league.
His stint will come to an end September at the conclusion of the Swiss Premier League season. While the Swiss Premier League and reserve league both take a halt, Coker will travel to Portugal from Switzerland this week to spectate at the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup. According to a source close to Coker, the club has agreed to pay for the trip as an added incentive in exchange for his signature.
Apart from his trip to Portugal and an undisclosed salary, Bienne Hatchets will also pay Coker’s accommodation and transport expenses as well as meals. He may receive bonuses depending on the club’s success in the league.
The source added that Coker will attempt to seal a contract with a club for the subsequent Italian Beach Soccer League. Coker is a former TT Pro League and national Under-23 goalkeeper.
Other than Coker, T&T has been represented at the Swiss Beach Soccer League by national players, Chad Appoo and Dominic Mc Dougall, both of whom signed for current Premier League leader, Chargers, last year. Coker, Appoo and McDougall have all been national beach soccer players since the team’s official formation in 2013.
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