A week of disruption.
This could be the week from hell as the Tigers progress from one drama to the next.
If last Sundays demoralising loss to Tuggeranong Hawks at Dairy Farmers Park in front of a strong home town crowd wasn’t bad enough, then the following four days were just as bad. With three days remaining it doesn’t seem to want to let up.
Tigers Coach Rod O’Riley advised the club that due to ongoing health issues he could not see himself continuing in the role of senior grade coach. O’Riley informed the Club on Monday morning of problems associated with a fall earlier this year and that it would be in the best interest of the Club that he tender his resignation.
Tigers Chairman of Football Bob Gibbs expressed his disappointment when accepting the resignation stating that O’Rileys health was of paramount importance and that his well being was far greater than the Clubs immediate concerns.
Rod had previously coached the Tigers to a Grand Final berth in 1994 before taking up a position with AFL Club Richmond. He took over the position of the Tigers 1st Grade Coach late last season from Mark Armstrong who retired from the playing arena after nine years as player coach.
The Tigers acted swiftly announcing the appointment of Adrian Pavese as caretaker coach for the balance of the 2011 season. Gibbs made the announcement to the players at training on Wednesday night.
Pavese was assistant coach to O’Riley as well as being the Tigers Reserve Grade Coach – a position he has held for the past four years which has resulted in three grand finals for consecutive premiership in 2009 and 2010. The team is currently second on the ladder in 2011. Rod has given every indication that he will assist the Club when he is fully recovered.
The Tigers accepted a one week suspension to leading forward James Kavanagh after an incident in the third quarter of their match last Sunday. Also reported was centre half back Roy Jaques (who although pleaded guilty to a reckless charge) will play this week due to a clean record. A further report at the weekend has resulted in Simon Kelland taking a one match suspension from an incident in the Reserve grade match.
The last few days has seen the following players withdraw from the senior grade team for this weekend: Tim Cook (injured), Brett Fruend (work accident), Kaine Stevens (unavailable), Paul Slater (injured) and Sam Daniel (unavailable).
This has obviously allowed a number of players to be included in the squad for Saturdays match. Moving into the team for their first senior grade matches this season will be Ryan Price and Beau Watts. Paul Franchi returns after injury as does Daniel Campbell and Alex Overs. Also returning is Travis Bull after being unavailable last weekend, James Manie makes a welcome return to the senior list after a stint in the Reserves. Returning after a year’s due to injury absence is triple premiership player Jon Elias.
Under 18 Grade Captain Steve Camp has been promoted for his first game of senior grade football and joins a growing list of players to play their first ever senior grade game with the Club on the SCG. Also included in the squad is youngster Mitch Price who will travel as the teams first emergency.