Former captain to coach UQ

Matthew Stewart will take the reins at the Red Lions this season.

2012 UQ Red Lions captain, Matthew Stewart is taking the reins as senior coach for 2013.

Originally planning on becoming one of the club’s runners this season, Stewart stepped into the role after UQ’s opening practice match against the Western Magpies.

Stewart coached the side for the first time in a practice match against Mayne last month.

After playing for the Red Lions for eight years, Stewart was set to be a runner for the club said he was excited to coach the side in their first Division One season.

“I’m really excited about the journey,” Stewart said.

Stewart said his relationship with and knowledge of the current crop of players, having led them to back-to-back Division Two grand finals, would help ease his transition into the top job.

“I’ve had a lot to do with the players so I’ve got a bit of understanding of all the players, who they are. It certainly helps,” he said.

Stewart began playing for UQ after moving to Queensland from Victoria and said he had immense faith in the Red Lions as they take on the challenge of Division one footy.

“I believe in the club as an organisation. We’ve got really strong values,” he said.

“It’s a club that provides excellent opportunities for young footballers coming through and I think we’ve really built something great over the last few years.”

Stewart said the people involved with UQ were the reason that he had played for so long, and now had moved into the coaching role.

“When I first moved up, I was looking for a club for a kick and to have a bit of fun,” he said.

“I soon realised this club was something special.”

UQ plays its opening match against Maroochydore on April 20.

For the full fixture, click here.

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