The coach of the new Chadstone ladies for 2019 is Berend Kaaks.
Berend (or BK as he thankfully likes to be known), joined us here at Chadstone in 2018, playing a handful of games with our Div. 5 boys at the spritely age of 45. How did it come about and what does 2019 hold in store?
“I’d not actually played competitively since I was a teenager. I was hit by a car at 15 and told not to play contact sport. I stayed involved in footy through umpiring, goal umpiring up to WAFL back in Perth. While I haven’t played for many years, I’ve been involved in many games of footy over the years as at amateur level goal umpires often did all three games in a day. It’s not the most glamorous view at times from between the goal posts but certainly over the years it’s been a great spot to watch patterns of play unfold. I’ll always be thankful to Chadstone for welcoming me in and giving me a game after so long missing it.”
“This year through my wonderful partner Gail, I found myself around women’s football and although for very different reasons to my own background, was fascinated with the number of ladies who had always wanted to play footy but couldn’t. The opportunities are now there and from a coaching perspective it’s a unique challenge. A lot of ladies enjoying participating in this great sport for the first time, with a wide range of ages for new players to the sport and a range of backgrounds and skill levels coming in. In 2019, we get to see this fantastic club represented for the first time in women’s football. The goal is simple for our first season. Create an environment where ladies who want to play footy feel it’s open to them and enjoy the game by ensuring they are coached toward individual improvement and finding a way for every player to feel they are positively contributing to the team”.