Rochester working through the coronavirus challenge

By Brayden May

WHEN Steve Stroobants was named as Rochester’s coach for the 2020 season, he was already walking into the unknown.

It was to be his first role in senior football.

But his challenge became even greater when all community football was called off until at least May 31 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

“This is something which is new to all of us, even seasoned coaches,” Stroobants said.

“No-one knows what is going to happen; hopefully we find out some more in the coming weeks.

“The boys have been keeping up their running, which is really pleasing.

“I’m glad to say we’ve got a very self-driven group who know where they want to go.

“Having those type of people around the playing group has made my job much easier in the first few months.”

Stroobants said social media had become one of his most useful tools during football’s shutdown, as he had been able to use it to stay in touch with his players.

“I’ve been sending the boys a message at the start of every week outlining what I would like them to do for training sessions,” he said.

“But we’ve also had guys upload videos of trick shots they’ve been doing and then challenging their teammates to do the same.

“Those types of challenges have been great in terms of team bonding. After all, footy is about having fun and we are still finding ways to do that through everything that is happening.

“We all miss being able to spend time together as a group, whether that be at training or on game day.

“The social side of footy is one of the most important things in a club environment.”

More information regarding the start of the season should become available after stage three lockdown restrictions are reviewed by the Victorian Government on May 11.

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