Your daughter sounds marvelous, a lively and spirited player, a bright and eager competitor, a fine person overall. Everything you say about this coach and everything your daughter fears may certainly be true, neither you nor your daughter sound as though you are less that practical Nederlanders who make good sound and unsentimental judgements, and not at all given to flights of fancy. But when I look over what I see you've written down, I see another possible story to explain the situation, and I wonder if I might run it by somebody with a more intimate knowledge of the situation than I.
I see a coach who sees a very talented player in the later years of her national amateur career. The player has done a very fine job through her entire career, but the wear and tear of highly competitive sports have begun to wear on her body. The coach sees that this player would make a fine addition to the national team if her body can support her skill, her will and her determination to play the fine game she has been able to play in the past. So the coach takes a chance. Is this before or after the first injury? I have lost track. But as much of a blow as this initial injury has been been to your fine daughter, it has been perhaps a blow to the coach as well. Has the coach by now stuck her own neck out by inviting your daughter to put in the time and effort in training for the team?
Whatever the sacrifice, your daughter has made in terms of finances and physical effort and time, the coach too has invested effort. She has invested a certain amount of the confidence that other people have in her professional judgement. Coaches must guard this very carefully, because it is what they must depend upon to finance their life's labor, and the coach has made a special investment with your daughter because of the quarrel with your daughter's life partner. A coach can't afford to be seen as being petty, you know, to put personal quarrels above the good of the team. Her reputation rests on this as well.
Your daughter is now perhaps working out with the team, carefully. The coach is urging your daughter to be careful and to take her time. She wants your daughter to work out for the team, for the sake of the team, for the sake of your daughter, and certainly for her own sake. If she can he said to make a difficult judgement about using your daughter at the end of her career and make it work for the good of the team, this will make her look very skilled, very competent, very professional. This will work, however, only if your daughter can gain the cooperation of her body. The bodies of athletes have minds of their own.
A second injury is very bad news for everybody. Nobody wants to imagine what such a thing might mean for the team. The coach tells your daughter to take care and come back slowly, which is excellent advice, but she is very nervous about actually using her to play innings.
The coach is in a difficult position here. This second injury may very possibly mean that your daughter's body is overstressed—though perhaps not, nobody has been given a copy of the newspapers for the next six or eight months to read at their leisure, so nobody really knows.
Should the coach put the team's chances at risk by playing somebody who may be lost to injury during a demanding playing schedule, one where all the flaws in the makeup of the team may well be exposed? Should she put her own reputation on the line as well, when she may be able to improve the odds for the team and herself and her reputation by including somebody else?
There is, I think, no good choice here. The one she must think of first, however, is what is best for the team. Two injuries closely spaced together in one player nearing the end of her career may be too much risk for the team to carry into this difficult a contest, no matter how much the coach may hope the player would be able to contribute if she were to stay healthy. I would venture to say that she would find saying so to your daughter difficult because both of them had wanted your daughter to be able to play, each for different reasons. Remember, it's possible that the coach lost a real coup here, a real potential recognition of her brilliance as a coach when she found that it simply wasn't going to work out. She would have lost out as well.
Getting back at your daughter's partner would have been nothing in comparison, I suspect, and wouldn't have accounted for some of the reaction that you describe in the coach.
Of course, The coach could have done everything you assumed, and my reading could be claptrap. But if your daughter respected her as much as she did, I suspect that something else might have been going on, something more worthy of your daughter and of the coach she respect (ed) until recently. What do you think?
Respectfully yours, BobK.