Bushies lure top assistant

YARRAWONGA assistant coach Lee Fraser has replaced Andrew Carson as the Murray Bushrangers talent manager.

Fraser takes on the role after three years at J.C. Lowe Oval in which the Pigeons won two Ovens and Murray flags.

Carson recently accepted a job as North Melbourne’s national recruiter.

Fraser, who starts next Monday, said he was looking forward to identifying the region’s best underage players and helping them find their way to the highest level.

“It’s a fantastic opportunity,” Fraser said.

“AJ (Carson) has done a great job the past seven years and hopefully we can keep that going.

“It all happened pretty quickly.

“I guess my underlying passion for the game attracted me to the role and footy is such a big part of the community up here.”

The former Western Jet is believed to be the first TAC Cup graduate to go on to hold a talent manager role at one of the competition’s clubs.

Fraser, who was drafted by Hawthorn in 95, then spent three years at Williamstown in the VFL before becoming general manager at rival Coburg.

He moved to Yarrawonga with his family in 2010, immediately joining the town’s football and cricket clubs.

He is the captain of Yarrawonga-Mulwala’s A-Grade cricket team.

Pigeons’ co-coach Chris Kennedy said Fraser’s departure was a big blow, but wished his former assistant all the best.

“It’s a big loss for us — Lee organised our midfield — but it’s a great opportunity for him and I’m glad he’s got it,” he said.

“The footy club is very supportive about what he’s gone to do.

“We’ll miss him, but we wish him luck.”

Kennedy said the Bushrangers had landed a professional candidate.

“He’s really well organised and has good management skills,” he said.

“They’ve picked the right person.

“He will help build a great culture through the entire organisation.”