Interview : Tunisia Coach Attiaz

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For the start, lets talk about your thoughts of TWC and national tournaments in general?

TWC is an amazing tournament, EFRAG are an awesome host and we feel very happy to be here.

Tunisia was at The World Championships last year, and you have three of the five players returning this year. Can you talk me through the process of getting the current roster together?

The line-up couldn’t stay the same, as the last year’s line-up stayed together after TWC 2015 and formed a team – so they didn’t meet the rule of max 3 players from one team. For this year, I collected 20 of the best Tunisian players that created four mix teams and that played a private tournament. The winner of the tournament won the chance to represent Tunisia at TWC 2016.

After that you had the five players and the African qualifier was about to start. Did you prepare for that part of the competition?

We prepared more for the qualifier than for the main event, because it was the summer so the players had a lot of free time. The preparation lasted for more then three weeks. For the main event, it was very hard to schedule practice as three of the players work full time and two of them study, so some people have to get up early etc. They practiced for the event for maybe two weeks.

What do you think about the format of the tournament, since all teams go on to the playoffs?

I think it’s really good because you can see who is the best and for the players to play more maps. Last time Tunisia played only four maps in one day and they were out, this time they can get three days of practice, maybe four if they win.


Attiaz went from player in 2015 to coach in 2016

Talking about the today, the results for Tunisia were not that impressive. What happened n the three matches you played?

Players were very stressed, even though we were not on the main stage yet there was a lot of stress, especially for the players playing in a tournament like this for the first time.

So you think that your players underperformed, how do you think Tunisia could’ve finish in the groups if the players played on their usual level?

I think we could’ve been fourth or fifth, but since we started bad, we can still focus on playing good and getting information for the playoff stage. I’m really shocked with what happened so far, we were losing round after round and the players were not communicating. We talked for an hour after the matches and we figured out some things. It’s also hard for me as a coach as TWC uses the new coach rules, so I cannot talk when I want and players don’t call timeout when I ask them – they are stressed out and just want to play and think they can do it themselves.

You have four more matches to play, what do you expect, can you bounce back from this?

Turkey is next and they had a great start, so we are hoping to play well and get something like 12 rounds or even win, that would turn the whole team around for the rest of the competition.

Lastly, who do you think is the favorite for the tournament?

Most of the people think it’s Denmark, but I think it is Turkey – they practiced a lot, they bootcamped and I think that is the way to win.