Mentoring Mellish returns to coach Young

Mark Mellish
Mark Mellish

Mark Mellish thought he had closed the door on his Young coaching career when he left the club at the end of the 2015 season.

Having watched his young team gradually grow up for some time, it was time to step away and enjoy watching his young daughter grow up instead.

But when Lions president Paul Cameron challenged him to once again guide the club’s youthful players into the future, Mellish could not resist.

“Paul contacted me and said the guys just needed a bit more direction and structure,” he said.

“With all due respect to the previous guys who did a good job in their own right, Paul and I have worked well together in the past so I took the opportunity when he asked me to come back.”

Mellish, who coached Yong from 2010 until 2015, said he would embrace the challenge of coaching a squad that was younger than ever.

“When I left the average age was about 25, and this time when you look at the 20 or so players I’ve spoken to so far, the average age is probably pushing right back into the teens,” he said.

Mellish said he viewed his team as an exciting long-term project.

“The first step will be getting our structure sorted and instilling the discipline I want the guys to play with,” he said.

The club will boast just one senior team and Mellish expects them to compete in first-grade once again.