Members Message

Members Message – Quarterly update from Head of Football & Talent Paul Streatfield

With all teams having now commenced their seasons I thought it would be a good time to touch base with you again and provide an overview of some of the key happenings across the football department for this initial part of the year.

Our Women’s side are working their way through a number of challenges with great resilience. Unfortunately, injury has hit the squad however they have shown they have good depth and are able to remain competitive in some narrow defeats. I know everyone involved is working very hard and they have some exciting football to come in the second half of the season. Bruce Dawes and his team are all working well together and have the group unified in their future direction. Special thanks to Michael Wakim and his development team who completed their season on the weekend. We look forward to many of these girls featuring in our league side in the years to come.

Since I wrote to you last, Tom Keough has commenced in a mentoring role with some of our players in the Centre of Excellence and also some who have graduated in to the senior program. Tom is working closely with a select group of players in all aspects of their development both on and off the field. Tom’s extensive football background combined with his teaching qualification and his overall love for the club makes him the perfect fit for this role and he has hit the ground running.

Our Centre of Excellence (U16/18 boys) sides have commenced their seasons with mixed results to date. There is a shift in game-style for these sides as they adapt to new philosophies and focuses that are intended to fast-track their development and progression to the new style of Adam Hartlett at senior level over the coming years. Russell Godson and Scott Patching have the teams heading in the right direction and they are working with an exceptional group of young men who are a pleasure to have at the club.

Our academy programs have commenced in our country regions. In 2023 we will have two academies – one in the Riverland based out of Loxton North, and one in our newly zoned River Murray region, based in Tailem Bend. Invited players will train monthly in both regions and the primary focus of these is on skills and fundamental development. I am pleased to report that the engagement from the local clubs and leagues has been excellent as has the approach from the players and families involved.

In the Men’s side, Dylan Bramich has joined us from Tasmania over the past few months. Dylan is a strong athletic ruckman who has shown lots of promise over the pre-season and will be pushing his case for league selection as the season progresses. Dylan’s recruitment was targeted and was based around the knowledge that Oscar Steene was likely to be selected at AFL level. What a fantastic opportunity for Oscar and we wish him all the best in this journey.

I hope that you saw some positives in the first two rounds from the mens side. It has been encouraging to see some good quality football played in both matches. You are getting a good look at some of the exciting talent coming through and they are all learning from their experiences each weekend which will help our club in the long run. Our challenge of course is to play for longer and minimise patches of opposition momentum. The guys are working hard and are looking to build over the coming weeks.

I look forward to seeing you all at the various games we have coming up for our teams. Your ongoing support is greatly appreciated and goes a long way to helping us move forward.


Paul Streatfield – Head of Football & Talent