Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Kalafatis disappointed to have departed Suns

Nick Kalafatis has been left with a heavy heart after giving up the captaincy and leaving Goulburn Valley Suns due to not being able to attend training sessions in Melbourne.

MATTHEW GALEA July 8, 2014 3:15am

Nick Kalafatis is disappointed to have left Goulburn Valley Suns because he couldn’t make Melbourne training sessions.

Former Goulburn Valley Suns captain Nick Kalafatis has spoken of his disappointment in leaving the National Premier Leagues Victoria club on the final day before the transfer window closed.

The inaugural captain made the decision with a heavy heart because he could not make Wednesday night training sessions in Melbourne.

Outgoing Suns coach Peter Zois insisted on a Wednesday night training session in Melbourne at the Maribyrnong Sports College where he works, but Kalafatis was unable to commit to the sessions due to work commitments.

Zois has since left the club.

‘‘I couldn’t follow the team to training in Melbourne because of that,’’ Kalafatis said.

‘‘I discussed it with the coach and we thought the best way and the fairest outcome for everyone was for me to not be there.

‘‘I’m not happy leaving the Suns, but the club comes first.’’

Kalafatis stayed at the Suns until the end of the transfer window, but handed in his transfer to Shepparton United after it was made clear Zois wanted all players at Wednesday’s Melbourne sessions.

‘‘Peter wanted everyone there and I just couldn’t be there, so the best decision was to leave,’’ Kalafatis said.

‘‘With my work I can’t travel at those times during the week and I agree with Peter that everyone should be at training.

‘‘I was the captain and I wanted to lead by example and if I couldn’t be there then it would be better for me to leave.’’

Kalafatis already coached Shepparton United’s senior men’s team, but now plays for it as well, helping the Blues to a clean sheet on Sunday in a 3-0 win against Kyabram Phoenix.

The former Suns captain left the door open on a return to the club next season.

‘‘I support the Suns 100 per cent and if I can help in the future, I will,’’ Kalafatis said.

Kalafatis said a rushed pre-season for the senior side, which sits at the bottom of the NPLV table, eight points behind second-last Ballarat Red Devils, did the team no favours.

‘‘Everyone agrees it was all a bit rushed and we didn’t have the time to prepare properly,’’ Kalafatis said.

‘‘The only difference between us and some of the other teams in the closer games was fitness. They could run out the whole game and we couldn’t.’’

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