MALLALA Football Club A-grade coach Steve Lubcke will not continue on in the role in 2018.
The dual premiership coach – who took the club to flags in 2013 and ’16, and grand finals in ’14, ’15 and ’17 – made the announcement following last fortnight’s Adelaide Plains grand final loss to Two Wells.
After six years at the helm, Lubcke said it was time for a change.
“I thought the same voice and same message after six years, they (the players) needed a recharge with someone else coming in,” he said.
“I was really conscious of the fact that I wanted to leave the club in great shape, and I think the timing was perfect.
“That decision was made before the grand final, so the result had no bearing on my decision.”
Lubcke said he had a big admiration for the club, which he dubbed as the “whole package”.
“It’s a wonderful organisation with how they go about it,” he said.
“I’m very sad to leave something like that, it’s the template what other clubs should base themselves around.”
Throughout his time at the Magpies, Lubcke said he was fortunate to coach some outstanding individuals.
“What probably radiates in my mind, particularly last year when we had all those injuries, is that all the senior group got together and filled the voids,” he said.
“It’s their ability – rather than the individuals of the group – to be all tracking the same path.
“Joel Montgomerie is on par with some of the best footballers in country football.
“Jordie Clements, Nigel Osborn and, this year, Josh Seal, as well, we’ve been lucky with on-ballers.
“We’ve also had the emergence of Jake Birchmore at centre-half-back.
“It’s probably the younger ones who captured my enthusiasm for the job.”
Lubcke said he’s unsure what’s next for him, but didn’t rule out a return to Tanunda, which is currently seeking a coach following the departure of A-grade mentor Craig Griffiths.
“It’s up in the air,” he said.
“I probably will coach again, (it) could be next year, or the year after.”