The Launceston Football Club has today announced that Mitch Thorp will undertake the role as senior coach for the 2019 Bupa Tasmanian State League season. Thorp, the 2018 Hudson Medallist as the competition’s leading goalkicker, will perform the role as a playing-coach, filling the void left by former coach Sam Lonergan, who accepted the head coaching role at SANFL club Woodville-West Torrens. Thorp made the move to Windsor Park after a three-year coaching stint at Devonport, playing a key role in the Blues’ campaign.
“I am delighted to have the opportunity to coach at such an historic football club,” Thorp, 29, said.
“The coaching group we have assembled has a fantastic balance of “the old” – past premiership players at the Launceston Football Club in Tim Bristow (playing assistant) and Chris Savage along with Life Member Darrin Geard, and “the new” TSL premierships players Daniel Trevena, Jay Blackberry and Cam Downie.”
Savage, a co-captain in 2017 and 2011 Tassie Medal winner Bristow will add plenty to the coaching stocks, with Thorp confident that the Blues are in a strong position on and off the field.
“We have also been fortunate to obtain the services of Ben Killalea as our high performance coach, with Ben set to look after all of our strength & conditioning requirements at the club. The coaching group is fully aware that we have plenty of work to do moving forward, however we’re optimistic that with the right attitudes we can build the foundation for sustained success for years to come,” he said.
Club president Sandra Boland insists that Thorp is the right person for the job, particularly with the team assembled around him.
“Mitch offered an engaging presentation to an impartial panel to prove successful in this process. Mitch has extensive experience including AFL draft pick for Hawthorn, SANFL, Tassie Devils, previous TSL coaching and playing experience and a TSL premiership as coach,” she said.
“We are excited to have Mitch step up into the role. He played with Launceston this past season and is ready to move back into a coaching role. He is already engaging with players for both retention and recruitment and has commenced putting together his support team to coach for 2019. Mitch’s knowledge and enthusiasm, we believe will help the club in its success for the next 2 seasons.”