President’s Message 2017

 
To all our players, families and sponsors, welcome to season 2017.
 
Well …… we’re finally ready for first bounce!
 
First and foremost we remain committed to being a family club always having the best interests of our players in the front of our minds.  So the SMJFL’s tag line, “It’s all about the kids!” remains our call to action. 
 
We seek to enrich the experience of our kids by focusing on what is important to them in playing AFL Football – Fun, Fitness, Friendship.  These are important matters to remember both as parents and spectators.
 
There has been plenty going on in the off season, including: 
 

  • Refreshed football department under our new Director of Coaching, Tony Pucella, who will also be coaching one of our U8 teams
  • The introduction of a dynamic football program to “coach the coaches”
  • Fielding two U15 Div 1 teams to further develop our boys in that age group
  • Our first Girls team in a number of years will take to the field (with further focus on girls through the season and for next year and beyond)
  • Retention of all our major sponsors – your generosity and commitment is much appreciated
  • Continuation of our Boot Swap to support indigenous communities
  • Growth in registrations
  • Continuation of our merged teams with Hampton Rovers from U15 ages and above
  • Fielding a merged U17 team

 
The Club continues to invest in our football department to provide the best experience and training for our players. Following an extensive selection process, the Club appointed Tony Pucella as our new Director of Coaching. 
 
Our vision is to create a consistent approach to playing and training commencing from U8s and building right through a child’s career at the Zebs.  Additional skills are added as our players move from age group to age group.  We will develop the Zebra’s way of approaching and playing football.
 
Coaches will be assisted with a structured program of drills and development assistance easily available through our app which is currently being re-developed and will be launched soon.  And once we get our ground allocations finally sorted, every Friday, there will be an opportunity for players of any age group to enjoy extra coaching by developing their skills under the watchful supervision of our Footy Interns.
 
This is an exciting development at the Club which has been well received by our volunteer coaches who have already been exposed to it.
 
The ground surface at RG Chisholm Reserve has now been redeveloped and looks magnificent.  There will continue to be some bedding in issues and restrictions in this first year so please be patient. That may mean some games at grounds that we do not normally play.
 
The Zeb’s App will be back bigger than ever so once re-launched I encourage you to download it.  Very handy for finding out where the next game is, results and ladder position.
 
We have a full calendar of social events planned so please add them to your calendar as they are announced with the first event being our traditional Back to Zebs evening this Sunday 23 April at the Club Rooms.
 
I want to pay recognition to our tireless Committee members and volunteers who have registered and kitted out almost 500 players across 24 teams.  
 
I also want to thank all of our volunteers for their time and efforts across the entire season.  There are no games without you.
 
 
Go Zebs ……..
 
Kind regards
 
Rick Bierens   
President, ESJFC