REIGNING Bendigo Football League premier Strathfieldsaye will have joint coaches next season, with Bryce Curnow to join Darryl Wilson in leading the Storm’s tilt at a flag hat-trick.
Wilson has spent the past five years coaching the Storm, including to the past two premierships, but believes the appointment of Curnow as a fresh voice will help keep the group invigorated.
Curnow will be the second co-coach Wilson has shared the role with at the Storm, having also done so with Wayne Schultz in 2013.
Curnow, 24, has spent the past five years with VFL club North Ballarat, during which his aligned club has been the Storm.
One of the key attractions to the role for Curnow, whose season was soured this year by a shoulder injury that required a reconstruction, is to not only be closer to family, but to also continue to build on his leadership skills.
“With my leadership in footy I try to be outspoken, voice my opinion and give feedback, which is something I have been taught at North Ballarat,” Curnow said on Thursday.
“I’ve been talking to Darryl for a few years about coaching and the opportunity has arisen, so it has worked out well.
“I enjoyed my time at North Ballarat, but it’s time for a change. Strathfieldsaye is in good hands at the moment with the people at the club and the under-18s having won the flag this year as well is really exciting and hopefully, we can blood a few of those players.”
As well as the co-coaching role, Curnow also offers the Storm plenty of on-field versatility, having played key position at both ends for the Roosters, including winning the senior goalkicking in 2014.
“I’ll mix it up a bit at either end depending on what’s happening in the game.”“I played a lot of my junior footy at full-forward, but since I’ve been at North Ballarat I’ve played some of my better footy at centre half-back and full-back,” Curnow said.
Under the new player points system, Curnow joins the Storm as a State League Tier 1 VFL player worth five points.
Wilson said Curnow would be a valuable acquisition to the Storm with his experience at North Ballarat, and also the flexibility he offers at either end of the ground.
As well as co-coaches, the Storm – who have won their past 37 games - will also have co-captains next year, with Jayden Donaldson to join dual premiership skipper Shannon Geary in the role.
Kallen Geary and Ash Trollop will be assistant coaches.
Dale Cameron has been appointed the Storm’s new reserves coach, while after leading the side to a premiership this year, Bart Leahy will again coach the under-18s.