Co-coaches an­nounced

Deniliquin Pastoral Times - - Sport -

A Mathoura premiership player from 1993 and a se­nior player for many years will take the reins of the thirds team next year.

Tim McCormick (pic­tured) and Nathan O’Cal­laghan have more than 700 se­nior caps be­tween them — most of them at Mathoura.

And the duo have al­ready be­gun prepa­ra­tions for the 2019 Pi­cola and District Foot­ball League sea­son, stat­ing their pri­or­ity was player num­bers.

The Tim­ber­cut­ters have had a tu­mul­tuous run with the un­der-17s side in re­cent times.

It wasn’t long ago the club wasn’t able to field a thirds team. But if you look back fur­ther it only took the club two years to go from no team at all to a grand fi­nal in the un­der-17s.

Now McCormick and O’Cal­laghan are keen to set Mathoura back on a win­ning run.

But first, the co-coaches need the play­ers.

‘‘In my day you would grow up some­where and keep play­ing your footy lo­cal rather than go­ing off to univer­sity in Mel­bourne like they do to­day,’’ McCormick said.

‘‘Nathan and I are quite like-minded in sport and in life. If we can get the kids to play out here it’ll be more about get­ting them ready for se­nior foot­ball, and if that’s at Mathoura, even bet­ter.

‘‘We re­alise what num­bers have been and will be a strug­gle for us. But we will be putting to­gether an ex­pres­sion of in­ter­est evening on De­cem­ber 19 at the Mathoura clu­b­rooms where par­ents can come in and ba­si­cally ask us any­thing they’re keen to know,’’ he said.

McCormick was the club pres­i­dent at a time when the se­nior foot­ballers were at the peak of their pow­ers, reach­ing the PDFL fi­nals in suc­ces­sive years near 2010.

‘‘That was ac­tu­ally dur­ing the time we took the Pi­cola League to court over the al­lo­ca­tion of the grand fi­nal venue, it went all the way to the Mel­bourne Mag­is­trates’ Court ac­tu­ally,’’ he said.

But the club has moved past that, and is solely look­ing to field a thirds team in the com­ing sea­son, and to build on that each sea­son af­ter.

‘‘We also re­alise there are quite a few clubs in the area that are flush with ju­nior play­ers.

‘‘If they have 40 kids tri­alling for 25 spots then there is an over­flow, and we’d be keen to see that over­flow come to us.

‘‘We’re ab­so­lutely not head-hunt­ing those play­ers but we want to make sure those kids have some­where to play week in, week out.

‘‘Ob­vi­ously we won’t be sure of the quan­tity or qual­ity of those play­ers, but our sea­son goal is more about men­tor­ing rather than win­ning ev­ery game, and we’ll go from there,’’ he said.

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