THE carrot of seeing through what they started was the primary motivation for Brad Aiken and Heath Russell re-signing at The Rock-Yerong Creek for next year.
The co-coaching partnership ensured the Magpies became the first Farrer League to lock in their leaders for 2023 by re-committing to TRYC for next year.
The pair came together at the helm of TRYC last season and have overseen the Magpies' return to being a force of the Farrer League competition.
The Magpies sit in third spot at the halfway mark of the season and the pair want to see through what they started.
"Obviously Brad and I sat down beforehand about what we wanted to do and we feel the boys we've got and what we've built over the last few years is something we didn't want to walk away from at the moment," Russell said.
"We feel like the boys have invested in us and we're definitely invested in them and the club. It's really positive.
"We've built from where the club was at a couple of years ago, where it was at a bit of a lull, we're now competitive and obviously you want to try and win comps and that's the goal. But just to be involved, you can measure success in plenty of different ways and we feel like the club is in a period of success, everything's positive and we definitely want to stay on that journey for a bit longer."
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Aiken was keen to go again and it was Russell who needed to consider whether he had the time to commit to the job for another 12 months.
Aiken is glad he did.
"If it come down to it, to be honest, we probably were either going to do it together or not at all. We bound off each other really well," Aiken said.
"I would have been disappointed if I went on by myself and maybe we achieved something and he wasn't able to be apart of it. It would have been a good feeling in one way but a funny feeling in the other.
"We are on the same page with how we want to play but we do see things differently sometimes so we can put a different spin on it.
"Even with training and with the way we go about things sometimes, I get frustrated sometimes, purely because I know what we can do and we've done it before and then we be the total opposite and he cools me down.
"Other times, unexpectedly he'll just lose it, it's funny, and I'll cool him down. They call us mum and dad. It's a funny partnership but we enjoy it."
Aiken is proud of the quality of recruits the Magpies have been able to attract over the past two seasons and credits for Russell for the work in that area. But he also believes the club's locally-based players have been the major reason behind their rise up the ladder.
"We put it on our local fellas, we always try to explain to them that we can bring these recruits in from Canberra that have played higher level footy, and yeah they're good players, but it's not them that make the difference it's actually our local fellas," he said.
"They needed to get better with their decision making, they needed to get better with their foot skills, they needed to get fitter, they needed to want to make a difference when these other blokes come in.
"I think they're starting to understand that and building confidence within each other and the Canberra blokes come in and play some good footy and the beauty of it is, the Canberra boys are like locals now, next year if they come back on board they all become one pointers. That's a credit to the footy club.
"I hate it when recruited players come, stay for a year and they take off again. I like it when they stay at least two to three years because not only can you build something with them but they can build something with the local blokes."
Meantime, Russell will play his 200th game on Saturday, against the Jets at Ardlethan on Saturday.
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