K rock Football

Hawks to continue aggressive approach

Drysdale co-coaches Luke Matthews and Daniel Jull. (krockfootball.com.au Image/Al Packer)

NEWLY-appointed Drysdale co-coach Luke Matthews says the Hawks will continue their aggressive recruiting approach as they look to end a finals drought extending back to their most recent grand final appearance in 2013.

They already have added former Essendon speedster Lauchie Dalgleish and Bell Park half-back Chris Lynch, while Jarrod Love returns after a stint with the Dragons and premiership player Seb Wild will also play in 2019 after a year off.

However, it’s the myriad of homegrown talent playing at higher levels Drysdale is targetting.

“It’s one thing in our vision and our plan; we want to get anyone that is a homegrown Drysy player that’s gone to play at a higher level, we want to bring them back to finish their careers and play a part in our vision and our plan going forward,” Matthews said.

“We’re very fortunate we’ve got those guys out there, but we want to bring them back.”

Matthews says the Hawks, who finished eighth with just five wins in 2018, have some positional priorities.

“Our midfield depth. We’re speaking to a few still,” he said.

“It’d be nice to get another key position forward. In saying that, we’ve got a few players who are pretty flexible.

“But definitely a midfielder and a goalkicker. We’ve been pretty low on kicking goals the last couple of years.”

Matthews, who was a key component in the Hawks’ consecutive premierships in 2009-10, was initially going to return to Mortimer Oval as an assistant coach.

However, his interest in sharing the coaching role with Daniel Jull was piqued following a conversation with football director Troy Harding.

“I said I’d help the club in whatever role I could do,” Matthews said.

“But, as each week and day went by, the more input I was having, the passion grew.

“I took the bench coach role, which was going to assist the playing co-coaches.

“Then, eventually, a few people were pushing me to take the role; Daniel wanted me to do the role.

“Luckily, I’ve got a supportive wife that said to go for the role, and here I am.”

Meanwhile, the Hawks added former Leopold reserves coach Luke Wilson as senior assistant coach for 2019.

Twitter: @tom_king79

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