Swans Announce 2015 Football Operations Leadership Group
Posted by Vietnam Swans on January 14, 2015
The ever-improving Vietnam Swans had a successful 2014 AFL Asia season, playing more games than any other team in Asia and finishing with a respectable 10 win, 5 loss, 1 draw record, including semi final berths at the 2014 Asian Champs and Manila Cups.
To take them forward to even greater heights in 2015, the Swans Football Operations Group have announced their 2015 leadership team, led by the newly appointed Director of Football Operations Tim Clements as announced at December’s AGM.
“The aim of this new structure is to diversify the club, meet club objectives, increase playing ability of the playing group, increase discipline of the club and provide support to the National Coach” Clements said.
The Swans are once again fortunate to have as National Coach former South Bunbury dual premiership player Andy Glendinning, who this year will have by his side a wealth of talent and experience in Saigon, Hanoi and Central Vietnam.
Legendary Swannies backman Bill Crang’s positive year on the park and good standing amongst the playing group across the nation left Clements and Glendinning no option but to reinstate him as National Captain. In support as Vice Captain will be Tim Pickert, who’s presence and enthusiasm in and around the sheds in 2014 was a major lift for the Swans. Pickett will also be assisting Glendinning with targeted skills sessions throughout the year.
Deputy Vice Captains have also been appointed in Saigon and Hanoi, with 2014 Swannies Best and Fairest Nathan Milner elevated to the leadership group, while high flying Hanoian David Skowronski will once again be leading the way up north in his last year with the Swans.
Fitness has been identified as a key area the playing group will need to improve in 2015, with Physical Education guru Mitch Hyde tasked with the job of getting the team in shape.
The Swans sister club, the Saigon Lady Gaels also had a huge 2014, winning silverware at the Asian Gaelic Games and South Asian Gaelic Games. Siobhan Synnott will once again perform the role of Captain/Coach to help the girls consolidate their outstanding inaugural year on the park, with the girls very much a part of the Swannies system.
Developing Auskick programs and establishing trainings in Central Vietnam have also been identified as two key objectives for the Swans in 2015, with the football department to provide support to Kevin Hornblower in his role of Auskick manager and Swans Hall-of-Famer Michael Johnston and Jason Carter in Central Vietnam.
The announcement of a football leadership group is indication of the Swannies intent to improve their standing in AFL Asia in 2015 and Clements believes the time is ripe for the team to take the next step.
“While our performances in 2014 were good, we know we can do better” Clements said.
“To lose the IndoChina Cup to Thailand was disappointing, we will certainly be looking to reclaim that back in Laos this year. We have also never made an Asian Champs or Manila Cup Grand Final, so we will be keen to take a step forward at those tournaments and really challenge ourselves against the best teams in Asia.”
The Swans annual Anzac Friendship Match continues to grow in stature with this year’s clash against 2014 Asian Champs premiers the Singapore Wombats on 25 April in Vung Tao sure to be a classic.
“Its going to be a massive test for us” Clements said. “The Wombats play a fast, physical brand of football so we are going to have to put in the work in the lead up if we want to compete effectively.”
The Swans will look to kick off their season in the coming weeks with announcements on the Anzac Day program, trainings and a comprehensive program of games expected shortly.
Vietnam Swans 2015 Football Department
Head of Football Operations: Tim Clements
Head Coach: Andy Glendinning
National Captai: Bill Crang
Vice-Captain: Tim Pickert
Deputy Vice Captain Saigon: Nathan Milner
Deputy Vice Captain Hanoi: David Skowronski (SOS)
Fitness Coach: Mitch Hyde
Central Vietnam: MJ and Jason Carter
Saigon Ladies Gaels Coach/Captian: Siobhan Synnott
AusKick: The Horn