COACH OF THE YEAR FOR 2014

Posted on - Latest News

The VAFA Senior Coach of the year will be presented at the VAFA AGM on Monday, 1 December this year. The list of candidates is as strong as ever this year with three coaches taking their side to back-to-back triumphs, whilst four coaches claimed their first flag at their respective clubs. 
You can vote below on who you think will win, and to help you out we have compiled the stats that matter about each of the nominees. 
Cameron Roberts (University Blacks) – Premier 
In his first year of senior coaching, Cameron Roberts took University Blacks to the holy grail of the VAFA, winning Blacks their first Premier Section flag since 1974. Roberts had Blacks on top of the ladder for 16 of the 18 weeks, taking them to a 15-3 record in the home and away. Blacks then comfortably beat St Bernard’s in the second semi final and ran away from Collegians in the second half to record a 44 point win in the Grand Final. 
Quinton Gleeson (University Blues) – Premier B
The former Woodrow Medalist and Blues premiership captain from 2004 took the reigns at Blues for the first time and his impact was immediate. Blessed with some serious talent, Gleeson harnessed this to take the relegated Blues on a barnstorming campaign that saw them finish the home and away season with a record of 15-3, never relinquishing top spot in that time. Holding off a spirited St Kevin’s in a second semi final win, the Blues then took to Old Carey in the second half of the Grand Final to win the club’s first senior flag since that triumph in 2004. 
Guy Martyn (Hampton Rovers) – Premier C
Martyn had his Rovers purring undefeated after the opening three rounds but they were quickly level at 3 wins and 3 losses leaving a few question marks. From there is was all one way traffic as the Rovers won 16 of their next 17 games to claim the club’s first back to back premierships since 1946-47. Their run of nine wins in a row had a couple of close shaves, but a finish of 14-4 in the home and away had them earn a second semi clash with Marcellin which they won to earn back to back promotions. Martyn played  more games this year and earned his spot in the Grand Final team where he kicked six goals in Rovers’ 37 point win over local rivals Parkdale Vultures.  
Matthew Montebello (Williamstown CYMS) – Division 1
For much of the season, Williamstown CYMS and for that matter the rest of the section were playing second fiddle to Therry Penola who completed the the home and away season undefeated. Willy meanwhile had secured second spot with a 14-4 season. Montebello had his chargers firing in the second semi with Therry as they jumped the Lions to win through to a Grand Final and at the same time earning promotion to Premier C, the club’s highest ever level in the VAFA. The Grand Final at Visy Park, Carlton was more of the same as Montebello’s players again demonstrated how finely tuned they were at the right time of the year to win the flag. 
Ian Aitken (Kew) – Division 2
Last year’s VAFA Coach of the Year, Ian Aitken had the Bears on path for another outstanding year before loss to Elsternwick both ended an unbeaten run of over 20 matches and triggered a mid season lull saw Kew drop off the pace. Aitken managed to turn things around though and they still won the minor premiership, dropping just two games for the year to finish with a 15-2-1 record. A second semi final loss to St Mary’s Salesian saw Kew make the Grand Final via the long route. Entering the decider as the underdogs, they jumped St Mary’s and then weathered the comeback to record the club’s first ever back-to-back premierships with an 11 point win. 
George Wakim (Northern Blues) – Division 3
As Wakim said on the premiership dais, Northern Blues are now 6-0 in finals in the VAFA. In two seasons as a senior club, Blues have won two flags under the tutelage of Wakim. Last year they came from 6th spot to pinch an unlikely flag, but this year they were the frontrunners. Blues finished the home and away season a game clear on top with a 14-4 record and a memorable 1 point win over Emmaus St Leos in the preliminary final earnt them back-to-back promotions. However, Blues were not done with there and they controlled most of the Grand Final against Richmond Central, to win back-to-back premierships by 24 points. 
Angus Hamilton (West Brunswick) – Division 4
Hamilton was blunt in his assessment during the season about his club’s performances against the rampaging Hawthorn, but a narrow semi final loss to the Hawks gave his Magpies enough belief they could turn the tables on Hawthorn should they get another chance. West Brunswick finished the home and away season in second spot with a 16-2 record, with both losses coming against the Hawks who had made the Grand Final without dropping a game. West Brunswick scraped through the preliminary final over Canterbury, and then played inspired footy in the Grand Final against Hawthorn. Hamilton leading West Brunswick to a first senior flag since 2008. 
So who should win the 2014 VAFA Senior Coach of the Year? Vote below.