Sunbury Lions hope to roar after making coaching changes

Sunbury Lions
Luke Marko Rawlings. Picture Damian Visentini

By Tara Murray

The Sunbury Lions have a new coaching set-up as they look to head in a different direction in the Ballarat Netball League.

Despite being one of the strongest netball clubs across the board, the Lions decided to part ways with head coach Adam Boldiston after three years.

Luke Marko Rawlings has been appointed A-grade coach for next season.

He will be supported by Kim Bailey, who will be a director of netball and the under-19s coach.

Lions president Hedley Duhau said they were excited about what Marko Rawlings could bring to the club.

Marko Rawlings comes to the Lions having coached Romsey in the Riddell District Netball League the past two seasons.

“I spoke with Luke directly and he has some really good experience playing as well as coaching,” Duhau said.

“He has some good ideas and will fit in with the direction that we want to go. We feel it’s a good time to head in a new direction and Luke will welcome in that new era going forward.”

Marko Rawlings said he was excited to join the Lions.

He said the timing was right for him to move on from Romsey.

“It’s a new club and it’s a new competition,” he said. “There will be plenty of challenges that I’m looking forward to getting my teeth into.”

Marko Rawlings said he didn’t know much about the Lions, but had heard good things about the club. He said talking to people, it seemed like it would be a good fit for him.

“It’s a good opportunity to grow as a coach, they’ve got multiple sides and are able to attract new players.

“I’ll be able to develop as a coach with new players and new experiences. I think I have a lot to offer them and they have a lot to offer me.”

Sunbury Lions
Kim Bailey. Picture Shawn Smits.

Marko Rawlings said not knowing many of the players, it would be a fresh start for both him and the playing group.

“I’ve got no expectations of who is there.”

He said with the competition having a bigger spread of areas, he expected it to be a stronger competition than the RDNL.

Marko Rawlings said he was looking forward to the opportunity to work with Bailey.

Bailey is no stranger to the Lions.

She has coached a number of sides at the club over the years and coached many on the under-19 team. She coached the Lions A-grade side to a premiership in 2013.

“I’m a big fan of hers,” Marko Rawlings said.

“I’ve been working with her at Geelong.

The experience behind her will help me develop as a coach.”

Duhau said he thought the partnership between Marko Rawlings and Bailey would work well.

“Kim is a really good asset for the club,” he said.

“She will be more like a mentor of Luke, with Luke still being fairly young.

She’ll be able to help with recruiting players as well. “To get both together is the ideal scenario.

Hopefully Luke develops with us.”

Duhau thanked Boldiston for everything that he had done for the club during his time as coach.