Walker to coach WA

Nigel RoutledgeGeraldton Guardian

East Fremantle Football Club Midwest Academy coach Craig Walker has been appointed WACFL State coach for both the league and colts sides.

Walker has been given a two-year contract for 2015 and 2016 and WACFL general manager Joe Georgiades said he was excited about Walker’s appointment.

“Craig has had a solid grounding in development football in the Great Northern region and has worked closely with the WAFL system in that time, ” he said.

“We hope Craig can help bring the new wave of State country players through from the colts to the senior systems.”

A network of experienced country football selectors including Shane Darmody, Simon Duckworth, Crandon Keddie, James McRae and Brendan Simpson will help Walker assemble the best side available based on form at Country Week and throughout the home and away season.

Walker was excited about the challenge ahead and said players would be selected not just on form, but attitude and work rate as well.

“I want to thank the WACFL for the opportunity, ” he said.

“I must say the opportunity to represent your State as a player or coach is extremely exciting and I believe WA country players are some of the best in Australia, so I’m looking forward to proving that fact to the rest of the football industry.

“Both teams will have different challenges and no one will be a walk-up start.

“We want to restore that pride in representing your State and the country people, and to do that we not only need talented players but committed, hardworking players who respect that selection is a privilege.

“The system in place now is really good and we’ve got all the resources available to us, so hopefully we can have a big impact on the field and perform but also be a close unit off the field as well.”

The WACFL’s first showing will be a Colts curtain-raiser to the Fremantle versus Sydney AFL game on Anzac Day, where up to 44 country players will be given the opportunity to play at Domain Stadium.

The focus will then shift to the senior State side and a fixture against the South Australian Community Football League on July 25 in Perth.

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