K rock Football

Unfinished business for Smith

Werribee Centrals co-coach Nick Smith. (krockfootball.com.au Image/Al Packer)

NICK Smith took on board Werribee Central’s theme for the aborted 2020 season when making his decision on whether to coach the club next year.

Smith has confirmed he will share the role with Rhyce Prismall, who came on board as co-coach late last year.

“Our catchcry for this year was “unfinished business” because I felt last year we got close, and we’d added a few and this year could be our year,” Smith said.

“In the end, I had to use my catchphrase on myself.

“And also not feeling like I’d fully achieved in terms of a handover to Prissa (Prismall as well because we never got to do the actual season portion together.”

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However, Smith, who took the Centurions to last year’s preliminary final before succumbing to eventual premier Bannockburn, is unlikely to be in the position post-2021.

“I’m really thankful the club is allowing me to be part of the handover,” he said.

“I feel like I’ve helped rebuild the culture, improved our reputation, gameplan, developing players, all those things.

“Then you’ve got to hand the keys to someone that you don’t know who they are and they can often go in a different direction; I think Prissa’s the perfect person for it.”

With the Smith-Prismall combination now confirmed, preparation for 2021 can now begin.

However, Smith is keen for clarity around the salary cap for next year, with speculation of significant cuts across the state for next year.

“As much as I’d like to say otherwise, recruiting comes down to the bottom line of most players wanting to be paid and knowing what you’re working with,” he said.

“Depending on the player, sometimes those conversations are significant in whether or not you can retain that player.

“Our understanding is that they’re leaning towards a one-third reduction.

“That’s significant because unless another coach or club has another suggestion, that means you’re going to every player saying. “you need to take a 33 per cent but on whatever we signed you last year”.

“To be honest, I don’t know how that conversation goes because I’ve never had to do it before.”

With the Centurions based in the COVID-19 hotspot of Wyndham, they have been unable to continue to train despite the shutdown of the season.

Smith said when they do return to training, Prismall will take responsibility for the pre-season.

“We’re thinking, maybe, a longer pre-season but less sessions per week,” Smith said. “Maybe once a week with a longer run-in before Christmas.

“It feels weird we haven’t had the guys together in a room.

“We really only had one formal training night, and not everyone came, and not everyone could be together because we restricted to groups of 20.”

Twitter: @tom_king79