Kirchen back at the helm

By Jamie Lowe

A former Blighty playing-coach will be back at the helm of the club's senior side for the 2020 Picola District Football League season.

The Redeyes officially announced recently that Daniel Kirchen will take the reins from outgoing playing-coach Jack Tyndall.

Kirchen was Tyndall's predecessor, coaching the Redeyes in 2016 and 2017 before handing over the top job.

When Tyndall announced his intentions to step away from coaching earlier this season, the 42-year-old said the decision to put his hand up was easy.

“Obviously Blighty is a good club and I love being involved there,” Kirchen said.

“Despite not coaching the past two years, I’ve still been around and tried to help out as much as I could.”

The Redeyes had a tough year in 2019, finishing 11th on the ladder with just four wins.

With a host of players rumoured to be leaving the club to join the Deniliquin Rams, Kirchen said he will look to develop the club’s juniors.

“We’re going to have a bit of a focus on youth,” he said.

“There’s some talented players coming through the junior ranks, with some already playing a few games of senior footy.

“Our goal is obviously to make finals, but the main aim is to get game time into the young blokes.

“We had a pretty talented reserves side that won a premiership, so we’ll be needing a few of our older blokes to step up as well.

“I’ve also been talking to a few guys to try and get them across to Blighty.

“We’ll be looking for about four or five players to try and fill the gaps of the blokes who we expect will be leaving the club.”

Blighty have locked in all of their coaches for the 2020 season, with premiership-winning reserves coach Kyel Bain set to lead the twos again.

Club president Michael Norman said it was a load off the mind to have all of his coaches signed.

“It’s all official now and we’re excited for the 2020 season,” he said.

“We know the going is probably going to be a bit tough for the seniors but there’s a positive vibe at the club.

“We have a lot of talented juniors and are fresh off a reserves premiership win.

“We’re particularly excited to have Kirch on board. He’s a good operator and a good people person.

“Kyel Bain is going around again after a successful season as coach bringing home a well-deserved premiership to our community.

“We welcome Andy Amor as thirds coach. Andy brings a wealth of experience to our group and is looking forward to fast-tracking our youth development for the years to come.

“Matt Dudley returns as fourths coach after an outstanding season, with the kids making the preliminary final. Matt is keen to see the progression our future stars can achieve.

“Sammy Rourke is stepping up again to take on the fifths role; Sammy is excited to teach and guide our junior Redeyes on their football journey.

“We would like to thank our previous coaches in Jack Tyndall from the seniors, Dane Maxwell and Lachie Macdonald from the thirds and Blake Charlton from the fifths for the time and effort they put into their respective sides, which was much appreciated.

“The boys have all given us their all and we appreciate what they have done.”