WATTS DEPARTS AS UNI BLUES COACH

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Fergus Watts is stepping down as senior coach of University Blues Football Club immediately and he has intentions to pull on the boots again.
Watts approached the board and football committee a couple of weeks ago about the prospect of returning to playing with his brother Jack and helping the Blues climb up the Premier Section ladder. 
University Blues President Joeseph Sturrock told vafa.com.au that the delay in the public announcement of the decision was to canvass both the senior leadership group, about the prospect of Watts finishing up as coach to join as a player, as well as the football committee agreeing on the decision for Watts to relinquish his coaching duties.
“We needed to be certain this was the best move for the club, but now that the decision is made we need to move forward and be ready to take on Blacks this week” said Sturrock. 
Assistant coach and club Vice President Chris Reid will take over as senior coach for the remainder of the 2013 season. 
“Chris will take over as senior coach and we will look to advertise to find the best coach at the end of the season” said Sturrock.
Reid has applied for accreditation to coach in the VAFA. Preliminary accreditation is likely to be granted pending his completion of his AFL Level 1 Coaching Accreditation course. 
VAFA CEO Michael Sholly confirmed that there is still a formal process to go through in order for Fergus Watts to be approved to play. 
“The VAFA has received an application from University Blues and Fergus Watts for  his permit to play” said Sholly. 
The Association has also received a playing clearance from Collegians Football Club. Watts played five games with Collegians in 2010 and the clearance from them permits him to play with Blues. 
“The VAFA Permit Committee will be meeting with Watts on Thursday evening to decide if Watts is eligible to play according VAFA amateur status guidelines” said Sholly. 
The final hurdle surrounds the fact that Watts was being paid to coach University Blues and these payments must cease in order for him to play in the VAFA. 
“It is imperative that we ensure the integrity of amateur status is maintained and this is why Fergus will meet with us on Thursday evening before he is permitted to return to play” said Mr Sholly. 
Whether this is enough time for Watts to be picked in the side to take on University Blacks on Saturday is yet to be determined. 
“He has been completing full training sessions with the team for the past few weeks, however I will leave it to the match committee to see if he is selected if and when he receives his permit” said Sturrock. 
Watts played three matches for St Mary’s Football Club in Darwin this summer and managed a bag of six goals in one of them. 

Blues would be delighted if he were able to contribute a similar haul a few times in the remaining games this year, this time wearing the famous Melbourne University Football Club jumper.