Port succession plan has merit: Williams - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Port succession plan has merit: Williams

21/08/2009 04:33:13 PM Comments (0)

Port Adelaide coach Mark Williams is not against the idea of a succession plan for the days beyond the end of his two-year contract with the Power.

But he denies any knowledge of - or involvement in - such a plan being put in place, even as Hawthorn assistant coach Damien Hardwick circles ever more intently around a return to Alberton.

Hardwick, a Port premiership player and also a contender for the vacant senior coaching role at Richmond, was in Adelaide this week for a second round of talks with Port's hierarchy as he weighs up his options for 2010.

Given the prospect of senior role at the Tigers, it appears highly unlikely Hardwick would be entertaining the Power so strongly if he had not been given some kind of assurance about advancement.

Williams was adamant he would appreciate the help if Hardwick joined as an assistant, also saying succession plans have "merit", but denied he was complicit in a longer-term plan to usher in a new senior coach.

"That (a succession plan) is entirely up to the club to announce and proclaim. It's certainly not anything to do with me," Williams told reporters in Adelaide on Friday.

"I'm the senior coach for the next two years and I know that for certain.

"We've improved from last year's 13th position, we've won more games this year, we've got some games into our younger players.

"We're hopeful we can still make the finals and that's why we're going up to beat Brisbane and then come back and try to beat North Melbourne.

"If we can win both games and things go our way we'll still be in the finals and that'll be a great result for our club."

It is clear the Power are seeking a strong hand to assist Williams at the tiller, and outspoken utility Chad Cornes has said he would welcome Hardwick for the opportunity it afforded to bring some toughness back into a club that has been mentally suspect for much of 2009.

The inconsistency of the Power's group this year - they have not won two matches in succession since rounds three and four and won only one match away from home all season - has wrecked any chance of a meaningful role in September.

Williams said an investigation into the mentality of his players would be chief among post-season priorities.

"I can't lay it out to you right now but we'll be investigating what the best (approach is)," he said.

"If it's psychological profiling, if it's leadership training, whatever, the club are very much aware of it and we're searching for that and everyone is open and happy to have suggestions.

"We've had 1000 people send in remedies, whether it's hypnotherapy or whatever and we listen and discuss it and try to pick the eyes out of it.

"We have some restrictions with our resourcing of things, but we try to make it one of the priorities at the club."

Some decisions on the Power's evidently uneven list have already been made, with plenty of change likely once the final game is complete.

"We've spent some time over the last few weeks and months with regard to our list and who needs to stay and who needs to go, and those things will become evident pretty soon," Williams said.

"Our approach will be different next year, the resources and the support behind the players will be increased."

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