NIGEL Kol knows a thing or two about onfield success.
And the 2011 South Warrnambool senior premiership coach has spent this season passing down his considerable football knowledge to the Roosters’ next generation.
Kol is in his first foray into junior coaching and has taken South Warrnambool’s under 16 side to a first semi-final berth.
South Warrnambool will meet Koroit in the knockout final at Terang Recreation Reserve on Sunday.
Kol said coaching juniors was a worthwhile experience.
“My son plays there so I said I’d coach him for a year and I have really enjoyed it,” he said.
“Coaching Noah is something I have really enjoyed and to see him develop is a real bonus.” Kol said the chance to fine-tune players’ technique and mindsets before they made the jump to senior football was one of the most satisfying aspects of junior coaching.
“I think you are working with a group that are eager to learn,” he said.
“And you find out where the deficiencies are and you have more ability to influence change at junior level than at senior level because habits are formed.”
South Warrnambool suffered a 49-point loss to Cobden in its qualifying final showdown at Bushfield Recreation Reserve on Sunday.
Kol said he was quietly confident the Roosters would respond against Koroit this weekend but emphasised the club’s focus was on long-term success.
Roosters’ trio Kyden Jarvis, Shannon Beks and Hugh McCluggage — all eligible for under 16s — made their senior debuts this season.
“I suppose our philosophy is about improvement in everybody,” he said.
“We have had kids play senior footy this year which is fantastic for our junior development and our club.
“Even though we wanted to play finals, it is not the be-all and end-all for us.”
Kol said rovers Dominic Watt and Joshua Wain, ruckman Nathan Lucas and athletic centre half-forward Mar Gattek were among the Roosters’ most consistent performers this season.
He rates North Warrnambool Eagles and Cobden — the two second semi-final combatants — as the under 16s’ pacesetters.
“They are the two sides that have been the most consistent,” Kol said.
“North Warrnambool have a lot of big kids in that team and they are undefeated so it will be very difficult for anyone to beat them. (But) there is more pressure on them than anyone else.”
Week two finals schedule: Football: 9am, under 12s, Warrnambool v South Warrnambool; 10am, under 14s first semi-final, Warrnambool v South Warrnambool; 11.30am, under 14 second semi-final, Hawks v Cobden; 1pm, first semi-final under 16s, South Warrnambool v Koroit; 2.45pm, second semi-final under 16s, North Warrnambool Eagles v Cobden.
Netball: 10am, 12 and under, Warrnambool v Hawks; 10am, 12 and under, South Warrnambool v Cobden; 11am, first semi-final 14 and under, Warrnambool v Hawks; noon, second semi-final 14 and under, South Warrnambool v Cobden; 1pm, first semi-final 16 and under, Hawks v Cobden; 2pm, second semi-final 16 and under, Warrnambool v South Warrnambool.