Wimmera Football League coaches consider their ultimate players

A DRIVE to do what is needed and high-class skills are at the top of the shopping list for many Wimmera Football League coaches when they look to introduce new players to their squads.

The Mail-Times wanted to know what makes the ultimate Wimmera league footballer and posed the question to senior coaches.

Character

NEW Stawell Warriors coach Colin Macaffer was adamant that a players character should be considered before anything else.

“Essentially we want someone that is going to be a good clubman and fit in with what is already in place,” he said.

“What they do off the field is more important that what they do on it.”

He said a good clubman listened to what is asked of him, is aware of his teammates’ abilities and would attract other good people to a club.

It's like putting together a jigsaw puzzle.

Colin Macaffer

“It’s like putting together a jigsaw puzzle,” he said.

“If you’ve got the right pieces and they’re prepared to be flexible enough to fit into the puzzle to help the team and club it goes a long way.

“A player like that is rare.”

Nhill coach Tim Bone agreed with Macaffer.

“Every player will know what their role is and as long as they try to do that to the best of their ability then you’ll be competitive,” he said. “An ultimate team player that does the team things really makes everything click a lot faster.”

Skills

HORSHAM Saints coach Luke Fisher said nailing down certain skills that were most important in the league was very difficult.

“You really need to possess attributes in all areas of the game because the league is a high standard,” he said.

“It’s always nice to have someone who is quick and skillful but in the middle of winter it can be boggy and slow so being able to play in those different conditions is important.”

There aren’t necessarily a lot of players in league who can take a bunch of marks in a single game so if you have one of them it can be a huge advantage.

Deek Roberts

Both Fisher and Horsham Demons coach Deek Roberts noted that having someone who could clunk a contested mark in the forward line can sometimes be the difference between sides.

“There aren’t necessarily a lot of players in league who can take a bunch of marks in a single game so if you have one of them it can be a huge advantage,” Roberts said. 

“Being good with your hands in tight all over the ground is crucial and if you’re not hard nosed and aggressive in the contest you’re going to find it hard as well.”

Leadership

PLAYERS can show leadership in different ways but Bone said the important thing is they get it done by making the right decisions. 

“We’ll have a captain and vice-captain but we want everyone to show leadership on the field,” he said.

“We want them to be making good decisions in order to be the ultimate team player.”

We want them to be making good decisions in order to be the ultimate team player.

Tim Bone

Roberts said leaders who stood up in big games were vital to team success.

“It’s all well and good having a good season but you need to play your best footy in finals,” he said.

“Being a big game player can make you stand out because that’s when people go on watch.

“That is certainly a huge asset.”