Total Player 2023 by Paul Oberman

November 26, 2023

Paul Oberman, leading the charge as the Head Coach of the Aussie Stingers, has made a substantial impact on the Australian Women’s National Team since his appointment in November 2021.

Bringing both experience and Olympic pedigree to his role, Oberman himself participated as an Olympian in the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona as a player.

Before taking the reins as the head coach of the women’s national team, he served as the technical director of water polo in Singapore. Preceding this, Oberman spent a decade as the assistant coach of the Australian men’s national team.

Oberman’s coaching achievements include guiding the Aussie Stingers to gold at the Intercontinental Cup, marking a significant milestone for Australia’s women’s team. This summer, under Oberman’s guidance, the Aussie Stingers achieved an outstanding 4th place finish at the World Championships in Fukuoka, showcasing

Oberman noted: “Many good players and performances over the course of the year. Being an old leftie, I am partial to these players and those on this side of the pool. Our sport has so many great players and I just love watching what these talented athletes can achieve.” Here are his top picks:


+1 Pt | Judith Forca (ESP)

Spain National Team Player. Club: Sabadell. Position: Right-Wing

Judith is a very dangerous leftie who offers much for the Spanish team – sound defence, excellent passing and great shooting. She was excellent at the World Championships and showed her class during the finals phase – when it mattered!! She had a successful season both Internationally and Domestically, winning many trophies and medals.

+2 Pts | Sofia Giustini (ITA)

Italian National Team Player. Club: Sabdell. Position: Winger

The young superstar of the Italian team is continuing on the rise. Sofia reads and understands the game very well, either creating an opportunity (or helping defensively) for a team mate or scoring, blocking and being THAT player. The future is very bright for her.
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+3 Pts | Simone Van de Kraats (NED)

Netherlands National Team Player. Club: Mataro. Position: Right-Wing/h4> Simone is still a young athlete and just keeps getting better. She reads the game very well, scoring many counter attack goals, whilst delivering a perfect pass. She is very good defensively and creates steals whilst also making big blocks.


+4 Pts | Brigitte Sleeking (NED)

Netherlands National Team Player. Club: Vouliagmeni. Position: Winger

Played superbly at World Championships and certainly was a big reason why the Dutch had the gold medal placed around their necks. She is a very clinical finisher, whether from a drive, counter attack or outside. She is a very solid defender who is always ready to get a loose ball or help out a teammate.

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+5 Pts | Elena Ruiz (ESP)

Spanish National Team Player. Clubs: Sant Andreu. Position: Driver

Elena had a very successful past year, winning the European Championships, World League Super Final, Spanish Championship and LEN Champions League (Sabadell), and both the Senior and Junior MVP at this year’s World Championships. She is a young and super talented athlete who has a great shot and continues to grow in confidence.