Decorated player now passing it on
Thursday, 27th January, 2011
By Peter Argent
Broken Hill's most decorated footballer, Anthony Murgatroyd, has returned to coaching ranks.
The six-time BHFL Mail medallist and State player in three different jumpers will coach Langhorne Creek in the highly-rated Great Southern Football League this year.
"It is a strong football competition down here and a great community that is very accepting," Murgatroyd said.
"I played 15 games under Michael Simmons in 2009 but a broken leg finished my season and, for that matter, my career.
"After helping Simmo a bit I was bench coach for Paul Sherwood last year and am now doing the senior round."
Murgatroyd achieved nearly everything during his time in Broken Hill. He played in eight premierships, his first as a 16-year-old in 1989.
He spent a season with Merbein in the Sunraysia Football League, but most of his time was with South where he enjoyed continued success as a player, captain and coach.
His football resume is good as any country footballer in the nation.
It include plenty of premiership success to go with his personal accolades and with a bit more luck he could have also been drafted to St Kilda in 1998.
When quizzed on his footy philosophy, Murgatroyd explained that his game plan was based around solid offence.
"My coach Peter Nash has been important for me," he said.
"I worked under him and he was a driving force behind my time at Central. We even reversed roles late on.
"Peter (Johns), a South legend, is another person I look up to as well."
The 193cm (6'4") ruck rover is positive about the season ahead, suggesting a top three berth is the goal but that he'd be happy as long as the Hawks are in finals.
He's been helped by 2010 South Adelaide captain Ben Warren returning to the club and also has the likes of former SANFL league footballers Jarrad Kellock and Tom Hateley among his charges.
Former Swans and Sturt ruckman Simon Feast, who Langhorne Creek had sporadically because of his commitment as assistant coach with the Double Blues, is on board full time this campaign.
"I'm excited about the winter ahead," said Murgatroyd.
"With the injection of players to bring more hardness and leg speed to the group we hope to have a competitive unit.
"Being so close to Adelaide, the Great Southern Football League is a very strong competition and it will be tight again this year."
While the teetotaller doesn't get back to the Silver City very often these days because of family and sports commitments, Murgatroyd is still a Hillite at heart.
"There is still plenty of Broken Hill left in this boy."
Incidentally, among Murgatroyd's players is Central export Lachlan McGregor. He will play his second season for Langhorne Creek after coming to the club from Glenelg. Last season he kicked 55 goals.