Hocking won't put hand up

Sportal September 5, 2012, 4:20 pm
Garry Hocking

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Caretaker coach Garry Hocking has confirmed he does not want to be considered for the Port Adelaide senior coaching vacancy despite having impressed during his four-week spell in charge.

The former Geelong champion stepped into the breach when Matthew Primus and the Power parted company following the club's embarrassing 34-point loss to the Giants at Skoda Stadium.

And while Hocking was unable to guide the club to any victories during his brief stint as the No.1 man, there was plenty to like about Port's performances particularly in the final two weeks as they went down by 11 points to Brisbane at AAMI Stadium and then drew with Richmond at the MCG.

But having been rated among the top five candidates to become Primus' permanent replacement, with recently dumped Carlton coach Brett Ratten the favourite, Hocking said he does not yet feel he is ready for such responsibility.

"I said I would use the four weeks as an opportunity to build on my experience as a coach," Hocking said.

"I have thoroughly enjoyed working with the players and I think they have enjoyed the subtle changes I was able to make along the way to how we prepared and the competitive way in which we played.

"I also gained a lot out of the wider responsibilities of the senior coach, especially the interaction with other areas of the club and our supporters and managing the many people who work in and around the footy department, in particular the other assistant coaches and fitness staff.

"It was an honour to serve in the job, I've got some really valuable experience and I'm grateful to the club, president Brett Duncanson, CEO Keith Thomas and football GM Peter Rohde for the opportunity.

"The past four weeks have confirmed my passion for coaching at this level, but I believe I will further develop under a new senior coach who will bring fresh ideas and leadership from outside the club."

While Hocking believes the club has a bright future and will therefore remain at Alberton in 2013 in a yet-to-be-determined role, chief executive Keith Thomas was full of praise for the 43-year-old.

"Garry stepped up to the role when we needed him to in a difficult time, and he gave it everything he had during a very challenging four weeks," Thomas said.

"He has demonstrated his coaching talent and his obvious potential to seek a higher role.

"'Buddha' is respected by everyone in the game and he's now held in even higher regard especially at Port Adelaide, from our supporters through to the players, coaches and staff.

"We are lucky to have Garry staying at Alberton to continue working with our players.

"He now has even more knowledge and experience and will continue to make a fantastic contribution to Port Adelaide's journey towards success."

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