By Terry Wilson
Broadbeach and Mt Gravatt are the only clubs yet to confirm their coaches for the 2019 QAFL season.
One month after the Grand Final, five clubs have signed new coaches with preliminary finalists Broadbeach (Brett Andrews), Morningside (Steve Wildschut) and Mt Gravatt (Daniel Webster) are to be under new management, as will seventh-placed Labrador (Aaron Shattock) and second bottom Wilston Grange (Nathan Clarke).
Broadbeach will know who their new man is in a fortnight after the club sifts through applicants, but the three other clubs have made appointments.
After just one year in the job, Vultures’ coach Daniel Webster has been thrust back up to NEAFL level with the Aspley Hornets, a club where he served as John Blair’s right hand man for several seasons.
Southport Hall of Famer Clint Watts will take over from Steve Wildschut at Morningside having served assistant coaching stints with Brisbane and Redland in the NEAFL. He returns to Morningside for the first time since the early 2010s.
2014 Grand Final team member Liam Burke is new boss at Labrador, and ex-Mayne and Coolangatta utility Barry O’Brien has been handed the job at Wilston Grange.
Chad Owens ended speculation over whether he will step back from Palm Beach Currumbin by agreeing to another term at Salk Oval to chase a hat-trick of flags.
2018 QAFL Coach of the Year Brad Moore (Surfers Paradise), Jarad Marsh (Sandgate) and Brydan Morgan (Western Magpies) will also saddle up again next year.
The outgoing Wildschut, who told his players immediately after the Panthers lost this season’s Preliminary Final to Broadbeach that he was standing down, said the high turnover of coaches this off-season indicates just how tough and demanding coaching can be in this day and age.
“This is evidence of the fact of how much time and commitment coaching at QAFL level takes up,” Wildschut said.
Wildschut and Clarke both live on the Sunshine Coast which meant countless hours on the car driving to and from Brisbane for training and matches.