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Boro look to next wave

RETURNING Greensborough coach Robert Hyde expects 2017 to be a transitional year for his club after three consecutive top-three finishes.

The Boro last week confirmed the appointment of Hyde for his third stint after previously guiding the club to premierships in 1983 and 1984, before returning in 2013 and steering the Boro to the 2014 flag.

Hyde retired after the grand final win over Heidelberg, but has returned following Greensborough’s decision not to reappoint his successor Ben Turner for a third season.

The Boro were runners-up in Turner’s first season as coach, before losing to eventual premier Heidelberg in this year’s preliminary final.

Speaking to NFL.org.au, Hyde said his aim was to regenerate Greensborough’s list.

“As I’ve said to the committee, I wouldn’t be backing us to win the premiership,” Hyde said.

“We’ve still got the base of a good team but there is a heap of young kids that I want to give some game time to.

“We’ve been in the last eight grand finals in the under-19s and there really are some eight-plus quality kids there. If we can get them going for the future we can sustain a period of success for Greensborough.

“Not all of them are going to develop, some aren’t going to have the will power to do it, but there is enough there to excite me that four or five will become good senior players over the next couple of years.”

There will be ample spots up for grabs next season with 2014 premiership co-captain Matthew Hyde announcing his retirement, best and fairest winner David Ellard returning to Western Australia and Michael Hooper and Nick Carnell still weighing up their future.

Hyde named Mitch Hill, Ben Pannam, Tom Bevan-Shannon, Brody Tickell, Caillin Kett and Jacob Pickett as youngsters who will be pushing for senior selection next year.

All six played senior football at times this year, while five of them were part of Greensborough’s third successive under-19 premiership team in September.

As he prepares for his 34th year in coaching, Hyde said leading the Northern Football League representative team this year helped reignite his passion for the game.

“I really enjoyed those six weeks (as representative coach) and I thought ‘I’ve really missed this,’” he said.

“I have missed it for two years but it was my decision to give it away. Coaching again probably reignited my passion a bit and I probably sat back and realised I could’ve kept going.

However, with an overseas holiday planned during the 2017 football season, Hyde had not entertained the idea of coaching again until fielding a call from Greensborough last month.

“I didn’t intend to coach again and then BT (Ben Turner) departed so they rang me. Ben did a really good job, he’s a terrific young man and he’s got my respect,” Hyde said.

“I’m going overseas for five weeks, but we came to an arrangement where Mick Harford will coach when I’m away. It will be good. I’m looking forward to it.

“The belief is I can still do it and I have the belief that I can still have a really serious input in coaching and developing people.

“I have got limited time left so whether it’s one, two, three years, I’ll make the most of it before I do eventually retire.”

Greensborough will begin its pre-season training campaign in mid-November.