WAIS rowers Ben Cureton and Todd Skipworth today had the opportunity to gain from the experiences of Former Test cricketing great Justin Langer.
If courage and determination was measured in strokes, Langer would lead by a boat length, and the WAIS pair along with their Lightweight Coxless Four teammates Rod Chisholm and Anthony Edwards talked with the Western Australian legend about mental preparation, team work and the will to succeed.
The group met over a specially arranged lunch designed to inspire the rowing team to Olympic Gold in August.
"It was really interesting, to hear his thoughts and learn from his experiences," said Skipworth who is gearing up for his first Olympic Games.
"He talked about his career and gave examples of his preparations, it was really worthwhile."
Ever humble, Langer claimed to be equally flattered to talk with the boys.
"I jumped at the chance to talk with these guys when I was asked," he said.
"I've always thought that Olympians are the absolute embodiment of professionalism."
The innovative session was the brainchild of the Lightweight Coxless Four National Coach Antonio Maurogiovanni who wanted to add another dimension to the way his charges prepared.
"Even somebody who has been to several Olympics can still learn something from somebody else," he said.
"He (Langer) talked about preparation, both mental and physical and how to focus before you perform"
"He is a champion of his sport and that can only benefit my boys," said Maurogiovanni.
Cureton, Skipworth, Chisholm and Edwards are all currently located in Perth to train with WAIS based Maurogiovanni before heading to the Selection Trials next week in Penrith. The crew has already qualified and will use the meet as competitive training ahead of the European World Cup season in June-July, with the ultimate goal of competing for medals at Beijing in August.
Lightweight Squad (Perth-based): Coxless Four:
Chisholm, Rod (NSW)
Cureton, Ben (WA)
Edwards, Anthony (TAS)
Skipworth, Todd (WA)
COACH: Maurogiovanni, Antonio (WA)