A FORMER Castlederg man has taken up a prominent coaching role Down Under.
Mark Sproule, an ex-Tyrone Milk Cup player, has been appointed head coach of Rockingham FC under-20s.
The former Dergview and Dungannon United Youth player signed for Rockingham as a player in 2018, however, since then the Tyrone man has been plagued by injury.
Sproule still has ambitions to play once he recovers from his latest injury setback although that will have now have to fit in around his new part-time post as the club’s under-20s supremo.
Rockingham is a semi-professional club which plays in the NPL – the second tier of football in Australia – and Sproule will be working with players from 16 to 20-year-old who harbour ambitions of securing a career in the game.
“Our under-20s play in the NPL U20s league, which serves as a reserve league to the NPL,” he said.
“Basically like the Irish League Reserve League only here we keep it to youth players chasing a first team sport and full-time football.
“This is a part time job and is my first coaching job in football. I work with teenage players over 16, most of whom are in a full-time football environment at specialist football scholarship schools and then I have them three evenings per week and games at club level.
“We’re currently finalising our pre-season schedule and our league campaign commences in the first week of April.
“It’s early days from a coaching perspective but I’m already enjoy it. I’ll be enrolling on my FFA – A Licence next year which will enable me to make the next step once I have finished playing and who knows where it will go from there.
“I have fond memories of working under the likes of Joe McAree, Harry Fay and Marty Gormley and if I can be half as good as any of them in this space then I’ll be happy.”
FULL STORY IN THURSDAY’S STRABANE CHRONCILE
Posted: 1:37 pm February 20, 2021