MORWELL Tigers coach Damien Kerr has handed in his stripes after two seasons at the helm, but his contribution to the club will be felt for years to come.
Kerr took over the top job in 2011 during a transitional period for the club, at a time when several players were on their way out, and rebuilt from the ground up.
His blooding of young talent, such as the prolific ‘Bailey boys’ Boyd and Brandon, has established a strong foundation for future seasons.
Kerr cited work and commitments to his young family as central to his decision to step away, but said there was an itch to carry on in light of the Tigers’ recent success.
“It was tempting to do it again because I knew that they’d get better, it was just getting too hard with work and kids,” he said.
“Next year they’ll probably be better again so it’s good to leave in that situation where you’re on the way up.”
Kerr coached the side to finals football and silenced the sceptics who had written the Tigers off early in 2012.
“Most people probably thought at the start of the year we’d finish up second or third last so it was a pretty good result by the boys,” he said.
“I hope I’ve left them in a good enough position that next year they can push forward because I think they’re only a couple of players short of being a top three side.”
Morwell Football and Netball Club president Wade Presley applauded Kerr’s efforts as the first non-playing coach the club has utilised in some time.
“He’s been really good for our club; it was his first coaching job at that level and I don’t think he knew what to expect,” he said.
“He’s been really good particularly with some of the younger kids we had this year like the Bailey boys, he’s given them an opportunity to play senior footy.
“He’ll leave us in better shape than when he got here.”
Presley said the club was in the recruitment process for a new head coach and had already spoken to candidates.