Warriors Elliott's best shot

Sportal October 16, 2012, 8:50 am
Matthew Elliot

Getty Images © Enlarge photo

New Warriors coach Matthew Elliott will get the best chance to cement his name in NRL history thanks to a level of coaching support 'never received before' in his 16-year career.

Dust may have settled on Elliott's previous title wins, in the UK Super League back in 1997 and 1999. And in three NRL roles since then he has produced a winless finals record despite seven appearances.

But the 47-year-old mentor believes his new employers at Mount Smart can provide him with the missing pieces needed to break the 13-year drought and place him alongside the game's elite coaches.

"The two best coaches in the competition - Des Hasler (Bulldogs) and Craig Bellamy (Storm) - run the two best teams, and they are outstanding coaches and great people but they are also the best resourced coaches," said Elliott.

"What they do is coach their sides and don't get involved in any other part of the business.

"That opportunity now exists at the Warriors."

Elliott stands to gain from the announcement by club owners Owen Glenn and Eric Watson in July that they would do 'whatever it takes' to transform the club into the 'best sporting franchise in Australasia'.

The eight-game losing streak that followed their grand announcement prompted the sacking of coach Brian McClennan, whose last words revealed his displeasure at the lack of assistance he received during his tenure.

Whether the financial backing will be the game-changer the fallen club so desperately needs is yet to be seen, still Elliott is excited about the possibilities that lie ahead.

"There's an opportunity to do something special here over a sustained period. Not just visit the top of the competition occasionally," he said.

"This is going to be a high quality, athletic regime. This is going to be really well-resourced and we've got the opportunity to become one of the premier sporting franchises in Australasia."

Elliott's previous role with the Panthers ended halfway through the 2011 season after his side struggled to two wins from the opening seven games.

With the full support of Warriors management behind him, he believes he can apply himself to his role more effectively and avoid another disappointing run.

"I can focus on the whole football program knowing players have had a lot demanded of them and have been held accountable without me having to be there all the time."

Elliott promised the Warriors were in for a 'tough' preseason after speculation that a poor lead-up to this year's season led to a series of lacklustre performances.

And after it was announced on Monday that Warriors trainer Craig Walker had quit the club and returned to the Roosters, Elliott now has the ability to appoint a trainer of his liking.

However, the coach confirmed his first goal was to familiarise himself with the club's current roster after spending much of his first week in the country looking for a house.

He confirmed scouting had already begun for potential recruits from other NRL clubs and he hopes to finalise his squad in coming weeks.

"That's underway and there will be announcements made in that area. But my strong will is that we recruit the best quality players that we can to increase the quality of the team but also to increase the competition within the group."

Show:
Newest First
Oldest First
Top Rated
Most Replies
COMPARE & SAVE