Hasleby could coach at West Coast
Decorated Fremantle veteran Paul Hasleby could emerge a shock candidate to coach at arch rival West Coast next year in sweeping changes to Eagles football operations.
Hasleby, 29, is expected to consider retirement following next month’s finals series when he will be out of contract after 11 years with Fremantle.
The courageous midfielder is believed to want to play on next season, but will consider a coaching career if he has to retire.
He is not among a host of starting team Dockers controversially rested from Fremantle’s Round 21 clash against Hawthorn and could be among up to a dozen changes for next week’s crucial showdown with Carlton in Perth.
Hasleby emerging as a possible coaching contender at West Coast surfaces at the embattled Eagles start what is tipped to be a significant turnover of support staff after a third successive season out of finals.
West Coast finally confirmed that backline coach Daniel Metropolis and skills specialist Michael Broadbridge would be sacked when they were not offered new contracts.
Hasleby is only the fourth player to play over 200 games at Fremantle and is among a host of experienced Dockers with uncertain futures until captain Matthew Pavlich declares whether he will stay or leave the club.
Pavlich, 29 on New Year’s Eve and is out of contract at the end of this season.
The superstar all-rounder is tipped to command around $1million a season to sign a new contract, with Fremantle already understood to be approaching the peak of their $7.95million salary cap for 2010.
Pavlich and Hasleby join other high ranking Dockers Chris Tarrant, David Mundy, Luke McPharlin, Roger Hayden, Des Headland, Ryan Crowley, Antoni Grover and Steven Dodd who are all out of contract at the end of this season.
Hasleby had a bitter contract battle with Dockers officials late last season before he eventually accepted a one-year deal for 2010.
His manager Anthony Van Der Wielen refused point blank to discuss Hasleby’s future.
He had played 19 games out of a possible 20 before confronting the Hawks at an average of almost 18 possessions a match, as well as booting a handy 22 goals and slapped on 55 tackles.
Hasleby is highly regarded by some West Coast insiders.
He has an impeccable playing record against the Eagles winning four prestigious Ross Glendinning medals as best afield in derby games against the arch enemy and could be on the coaching market if he opts to end his Dockers playing days.
Hasleby played against West Coast 20 times with an average of 23 possessions a game in 11 derby wins since his NAB Rising Star winning debut season in 2000.
And in another significant upheaval on the changing face of football in West Australian football the besieged West Coast are considering allocating some of their young players to struggling WAFL club Perth.
The biggest turmoil in that move is prospects that long serving Eagles fitness consultant Brian Dawson could be swung into a vital coaching development role for West Coast in a switch from a successful stint with a re-born Swan Districts to the ailing Perth Demons as senior coach.
As part of desperate plans to significantly increase development of young West players moves are afoot for Eagles players to be aligned with Perth which is about to finish an unsavoury last in the nine-team WAFL competition.
WA football authorities have resisted attempts from West Coast to develop a reserves team in the local competition.
But Dawson’s move to Perth is a distinct move in direction of creating a second tier team for West Coast.
Dawson, who is a doctor and senior lecturer in human movement and sports science at the University of WA, has been a specialist fitness consultant to West Coast for over two decades.
He stunned WA football circles three years ago when he accepted a part-time senior coaching appointment at Swans and took the club into a grand final in his first season and followed that achievement with a preliminary final appearance last year.
In Dawson’s previous two seasons Swans developed impressive AFL draftees Nic Naitanui, Lewis Jetta, Chris Yarran, Jamie Bennell, Neville Jetta, Todd Banfield, Jeff Garlett, David Ellard, Clancee Pearce and Michael Walters.
With possibly the most impressive and heavily funded sponsorship from mining giant BHP, Swans are again poised for another deep presence into finals sitting second on the WAFL ladder behind runaway premiership fancies Claremont.