Coach hungry for success
By GREGOR MACTAGGARTmactaggartg@gladstoneobserver.com.au
TOUGH as nails onballer Jason Chirgwin is 'hungry' to build on the Quentin Allen era after his appointment as the Gladstone Mudcrabs A grade coach for 2005.
Taking over the reins from Allen who has moved to Victoria, the 31-year-old is primed for the big challenge of defending the Mudcrabs 2004 premiership crown.
"I am counting down the days until we start,'' Chirgwin said. "There is genuine excitement around the Muddies and hopefully we can defend the premiership.''
Originally from the Riverina, Chirgwin has been a fantastic servant for the Mudcrabs during three seasons and is well respected throughout the AFL Capricornia competition. "Having been part of the club for a while now, I think I have the respect of the boys and hopefully that helps with my coaching,'' he said.
But taking over from Allen who was the last season's AFL Queensland coach of the year shapes as a big challenge and is one Chirgwin cannot wait to tackle.
"I helped Quincy (Allen) out a bit last year as a leader around the club and with my experience I think I can keep the good work from last year going,'' he said.
Even so, Chirgwin is realistic enough to not expect it will be easy with the loss of a number of the club's premiership players.
"A few of the boys have left, but that presents a new challenge for the players who are still here and any new guys who join us this season,'' he said.
Chirgwin will work closely with newly-appointed reserve grade coach Aaron Barrett and believes the pair can combine well together.
"Aaron loves his footy and he knows a lot about the players in the Capricornia league,'' he said.
"He is a wealth of knowledge and is going to be fantastic.'' Club president John Terrick had nothing but praise for the new team, adding that the duo had the full support of the committee.
"We are excited about Jason and Aaron coaching this year,'' Terrick said.
"They both have a lot of good ideas and respect with the boys so it should be a good.''
The Mudcrabs kick off their season with a grand final replay against BITS on April 2.