Young men can be turned into great citizens with the help of country football clubs, according to a country footy veteran.ALEXANDRA BATHMAN July 1, 2014 3:04am
Young men can be turned into great citizens with the help of country football clubs, according to a country footy veteran.
Past player, coach and now Goulburn Valley Football League commentator John Ryan, 65, said he had seen a number of young men turn their lives around after being involved with a club.
‘‘In some ways football teaches more than just a game,’’ he said.
Mr Ryan has had experience in clubs across the region including Tatura, Nathalia and Kyabram.
He recalls a player in an under-16s team often in trouble with police and involved with drugs.
‘‘Most people wanted to get rid of him but we persevered. Within 12 months he had really turned around and helped us win the premiership.
‘‘I remember he came up to me after the game crying and we just hugged. He grew up to be quite clever.’’
Mr Ryan said seeing the improvements in the attitudes of some players was just as rewarding as winning a flag, if not more so.
He said a coach’s role was sometimes similar to a psychologist.
‘‘When I was a boy I was a bit of a wild one. But then I did my knee and had to stop playing and it made me realise all the opportunities I had missed.
‘‘I had to stop making stupid mistakes and I used to tell my players not to do the same things I had done.’’
Mr Ryan said he was concerned about the future of sporting clubs in rural towns and what it would mean to the smaller communities.
While he had not seen any closures in his time, the merging of some clubs was a warning sign.
‘‘These clubs are super important for young people to learn discipline they don’t seem get from anywhere else anymore and some kids just need some TLC.’’
Mr Ryan is now involved with the GVFL YouTube channel.
The channel has been a useful tool in keeping country football coverage current and accessible.
‘‘It takes footy to those who often can’t be there. They think it’s terrific.’’
Emergency services are on scene following a two- car crash on GV Hwy at the intersection of Zeerust Rd. Traffic is being diverted along Zeerust Rd.
Yarrawonga Football Netball Club senior footballer Jeremy O’Brien celebrated his 200th senior Ovens and Murray Football Netball League game against the Wodonga Bulldogs on Saturday.
Tatura Men’s Shed members enjoyed an interactive information session on Tuesday with Council on the Ageing’s Alan Bull.
Echuca's Sarah Baldwin played her 50th game for the Bendigo Thunder on Sunday.
Rochester student James Bolitho recently returned from India, spending time with students teaching swimming.
100 days at Tongala Primary.
Nagambie Primary School students - and budding green thumbs - have produced something truly special.
A man who attempted, but failed miserebly, to rob the Tocumwal Pie Shed is still on the run from police.
About 80 people attended Friday's community meeting at Heathcote RSL to discuss concerns about exposure to industrial antimony.
Black Dog ride participants meet up in Cobram before they burn rubber to beat the blues.
The Deni Rovers' A grade netballers are well and truly in the hunt for a finals berth after a strong win on Saturday.
Wheat crops sown at the end of April to mid-May were two to three weeks early, increasing the risk of frost damage, the Finley Discussion Group’s meetings earlier this month heard.
Benalla resident Vince Branigan uncovered more of Swanpool's history after discovering an old photograph.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.