Coach vows to avenge straight sets exit

KIEWA-Sandy Creek coach Ryan Richardson says this year’s straight sets exit from the finals will undoubtedly act as motivation for the Hawks next year.

Despite finishing on top of the ladder, the 2011 premier was bundled out of the finals series in stunning fashion following consecutive losses to eventual grand finalists Mitta United and Thurgoona.

And Richardson, who is in the running to be named Victorian senior coach of the year, said those losses would inspire plenty of Hawks to succeed in 2013.

“It will for a lot of the senior blokes,” Richardson said yesterday.

“We want to rectify it.

“Nothing went right for us in the finals this year and we didn’t take our opportunities.

“We need to come back fitter and better.”

Richardson, who was named the North East-Border coach of the year recently, said the Hawks were optimistic about keeping the majority of their list for next year.

About 20 coaches across Victoria are in the running to make a shortlist of five to win the state award, with the winner to be announced at a dinner at the MCG on November 9.

Rutherglen’s Noel Halton (Auskick) and Wodonga Raiders’ Glenn Wilkinson (youth) are also still in the running to win the top gong for their categories.