In an innovative first for Australian football, a player swap may be
involved in the deal to get coaches Mick Malthouse to Victoria Park and Ken
Judge to West Coast.
It is believed West Coast will release Malthouse from his contract at the end
of this season only if it is assured that Judge will leave Hawthorn and take
over the Eagles next year.
However, Hawthorn is not expected to release Judge - he, too, has a year of
his contract left - unless it receives compensation from West Coast.
And Hawthorn is considering a player trade that would be very one-sided and
favorable to the club. That is, a player low on the Hawthorn list for a player
who is considered among the best on West Coast's list.
It may be a move that needs AFL approval, for Ian Collins and his football
department would need to rule whether the plan was prejudicial to a fair draft.
Judge said yesterday on Triple M that he believed Hawthorn had finished the
season in reasonable position. He said a place in the finals would have been
nice but that most of the objectives identified by both him and the Hawthorn
board had been achieved.
Judge has re-established his position at Hawthorn after the board lost
confidence in his ability to lead the Hawks next year following the shock loss
to Collingwood in round 16.
The Hawks have won their past four games, including brave wins over West
Coast in Perth in round 20 and Saturday night's two-point win over Geelong.
It is believed that Hawthorn has identified Gary Ayres as its No.1 choice to
replace Judge, although Adelaide, too, is interested in the Geelong coach.
It was a tough weekend for coaches with Jeff Gieschen admitting his tenure at
Richmond could be in doubt. Though he doubted he could have got more out of his
players, Geischen said on 3LO that his position at the club ``is out of my
Richmond president Leon Daphne has dismissed as speculation suggestions that
the Tigers have made a late play for Kevin Sheedy, who is yet to re-sign with
However, Richmond has also made contact with Malthouse to establish his
Daphne stated last week that the club would review all positions at the club
from the presidency down. He has not unconditionally supported Gieschen until
that review is completed.
Tim Watson, St Kilda's rookie coach, said he accepted the blame for the
Saints' poor year and admitted he was not getting the best out of his team.
After St Kilda's first-round thrashing by the Lions in Brisbane, Watson said
his team played without passion.
It is a problem he has been unable to solve all season and he said after the
Saints' limp performance against Carlton on Saturday that the club's major
problem was not lack of fitness but a poor work rate.
``I feel the devastation, the disappointment that's attached to a side that
in my reckoning doesn't compete at the desired level," Watson said.
Former West Coast champion John Worsfold yesterday confirmed his interest in
coaching and that he would be prepared to move interstate to get the
Worsfold will spend a day with Geelong chief executive Brian Cook next week
after the Cats-Fremantle game at Shell Stadium.
Geelong's Barry Stoneham and his manager Ricky Nixon will meet Geelong
officials tonight to discuss whether the veteran is required by the club next