K rock Football

New coach to ‘spark the Roo Den’

Anakie has announced up and coming local coach Jayke Mawson as its new senior leader for 2024, with the Roos looking to bounce back from another tough GDFNL campaign.

The former South Barwon premiership player takes over from Daniel Bunworth after spending the last three years in the top job.

Anakie President Heath Menhennet said Mawson will bring a lot of energy to the role, as the Roos hope to improve on the one win secured this season.

“(Mawson) has certainly been building towards senior coaching, and he’s certainly got a lot of enthusiasm to spark the old ‘Roo Den’ up again as we look forward to a competitive season,” Menhennet said.

Mawson has spent his playing days under some of the regions great coaches in Dale Amos, Paul Corrigan, and Matthew Scarlett.

He has also played representative football for the Geelong and District Football League interleague team.

Menhennet admitted it’s been a challenging time for Anakie, particularly under Bunworth’s tenure, but he said there’s cause for optimism after the seniors secured their first win in 39 rounds when they beat North Geelong by seven points in Round Nine.

“It certainly is a buzz at the moment with news at Jake signing,” he said.

“He was at our training last Thursday night and met some of the boys and we’ve announced it to the playing group last week.

“They’re all excited about what’s to come, they’ve been through a tough road, everyone of them have turned up and put the jumper on every week which is fantastic.

“Certainly it would be great to reward those boys and everyone else, the fans, the volunteers.

“We rewarded them this year with the new clubrooms which has been 98 years in the making but certainly when we had our first win we nearly lifted the roof off the new rooms because of the adulation and excitement.

“So more of that in 2024 is what we’re chasing.”

Menhennet paid tribute to Bunworth for his three years leading the senior side, and said he’ll continue to stick around the club.

“It’s been a tough three years for him but he’s never wavered, never complained,” he said.

“There was a couple of games where we were short in reserve players and though that we may have to forfeit the reserves and he said straight up ‘I will play both games if I need to but we won’t be forfeiting,”

“That speaks volumes about the ticker that he showed.”

Anakie wrapped up its year with a 53-point loss to Winchelsea at Eastern Reserve on Saturday, a big turnaround from the demoralising 239-point loss suffered in the reverse fixture in Round Seven.

The Roos ultimately finished bottom of the ladder after North Geelong notched up its first win against Corio in the final round of the season.

By: Will Boddington