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City to welcome legend

Friday, 3rd June, 2011

MASTER COACH: Kevin Sheedy will be here next month on footy business but he will also be giving a public talk at the Civic Centre. MASTER COACH: Kevin Sheedy will be here next month on footy business but he will also be giving a public talk at the Civic Centre.

Aussie Rules legend Kevin Sheedy is coming to Broken Hill next month as part of a promotional visit with his new club, Greater Western Sydney.

The master coach will be here to meet local football officials and community leaders. The public will also get to see the man himself at a function at the Civic Centre.

He will also participate in two training sessions at the Jubilee Oval.

The visit on Monday, July 4 is part of the AFL's newest club's drive into country NSW as they prepare for their debut next year. The Far West is in the GWS zone.

A committee comprising representatives from the Broken Hill Football League and Junior Football Association (JFA ) have held several meetings to map out the visit.

The Chairman of the JFA, Scott Dunn, said the aim was to allow as many people as possible to meet Mr Sheedy;

"He is an icon of our game and with his new position as head coach of GWS we will be working alongside Kevin and his team for quite a few years to come we hope this visit is the first of many," Mr Dunn said.

"He will be part of the training sessions and we have arranged two functions where the general public will be invited to meet Kevin and hear him speak." 

The itinerary includes a breakfast with football officials and coaching staff, and well as civic and business leaders.

The main function will be held on Monday evening at the Civic Centre.

"We are calling it 'An evening with Kevin Sheedy,'" said the Chairman of the BHFL, Glenn Williams.

"Kevin will speak and take questions from the floor and we will be promoting it is an event where everyone is welcome," Mr Williams said.

"The price will be kept low so as many people as possible can attend and hear from one of the greats of our game."

The organising committee has decided that any money raised will go to the Junior Football Association.

"We are not holding this evening function purely to make money but we thought if we can raise some revenue then it will benefit our juniors," Mr Williams said.

One of the coaching clinics will be with Broken Hill's GWS Academy squad. Their coach, Dale Tonkin, said the chance to spend a even short time with the man who guided Essendon to four premierships would "fascinating".

"As far as coaches go, Sheedy is at the top of the tree and already the players are excited about him being here. I am sure they will pick up plenty from him.

"We can confirm the breakfast and the evening function (and) we hope to have tickets available to the public by next Monday. 

"It is rare that a football person of Sheedy's standing is in Broken Hill so this will be a wonderful chance for people to meet him and listen to what he has to say."

But Mr Sheedy is no stranger to Broken Hill; in his playing days he played for Richmond against Port Adelaide at the Jubilee Oval.

He also played alongside former South Broken Hill player Steve Hywood in the Tigers' beaten 1972 Grand Final team.

During his coaching stint at the Bombers he had former North player Dean Solomon who was a member of their 2000 premiership team.

It was only last week Sheedy named Solomon in a back pocket in his NSW State of Origin Team, a side drawn from players who were born in NSW and had distinguished themselves at VFL or AFL level.

With GWS becoming the 18th team in the AFL from next year, Mr Sheedy has also made it known he would be keen to entice Taylor Walker away from the Crows to the western suburbs of Sydney.

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