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Football Staff

Football Operations

Marcus Ashcroft

GM - Football Operations

Ashcroft was recruited to join the Brisbane Bears in 1989 and played over 150 consecutive games amongst his 318 career appearances (including 145 goals). He was at various points a key part of the leadership group although he never captained the club.

A three time premiership player with the Brisbane Lions, Ashcroft retired at the end of 2003, fittingly with an AFL premiership medallion.

 

 

 

Scott Pyle

Football Operations Coordinator

Kristy Hamson

Football Administration Assistant
 

 

Coaching Staff

Guy McKenna

Senior Coach

Coaching Career:

After retiring from the AFL McKenna coached in the West Australian Football League as senior coach of the Claremont Football Club with considerable success before moving to an assistant coaching role with the West Coast Eagles and then the Collingwood Football Club to be under former mentor Michael Malthouse.

Playing Career:

McKenna was recruited to the West Coast Eagles for the 1988 season with a pre-draft selection. He played for the Eagles from 1988 until 2000, notching up 267 games and booting 28 goals. He formed one of the most feared backlines in the AFL, along with John Worsfold, Ashley McIntosh, Glen Jakovich and Michael Brennan and was known for his cool demeanour and reliability.

He won the Club Champion Award twice, once in 1989 and the other in 1999, finishing in the top three another five times.

He was captain from 1998 until his retirement at the end of 2000. He kicked a memorable goal on the final kick of his career in Round 22 2000 which frenzied the crowd at Subiaco Oval.

After retiring he coached in the West Australian Football League as senior coach of the Claremont Football Club with considerable success before moving to an assistant coaching role with the West Coast Eagles and then the Collingwood Football Club to be under former mentor Michael Malthouse.

Matt Primus

Assistant Coach

Coaching Career

Matthew Primus joined the GC SUNS as Assistant Coach in 2012, where he will develop the club’s young midfield talent. After retiring from the AFL in 2004, Primus moved into an assistant coaching role at the Port Adelaide under mentor Mark Williams. When Williams stepped down as senior coach midway through the 2010 season, Primus initially took over caretaker coach, before being appointed the top job after finishing the season with 5 wins out of 7 games. Primus then spent three seasons as senior coach as the club, before joining the GC SUNS.

Playing Career

Primus began his career with the Fitzroy Football Club, where he played 20 games and kicked 5 goals in his first season, emerging as one of club’s key position players. After Fitzroy finished their last season in the AFL, Primus signed with Port Adelaide as an uncontracted zone player before the club’s first season in the AFL.

Primus enjoyed a successful and illustrious career with Port Adelaide, captaining the club from 2001-2005 whilst establishing himself as one of the games top ruckmen.

Dean Solomon

Assistant Coach

Playing Career:

Solomon made his AFL debut in 1998 for Essendon and was part of their 2000 premiership team.

On 13 October 2006 Solomon was traded to the Fremantle Dockers, following a trade of draft picks No. 42 and No. 47, Fremantle also gained pick No. 52 from the Bombers. He links up with close friend, forward Chris Tarrant who was traded to the Dockers on the same day from Collingwood.

On 18 February 2010 Solomon announced his retirement from AFL football due to a painful degenerative knee injury.

He joined the new Gold Coast Football Club as an assistant coach in the months before they entered the AFL for the 2011 season.

Andy Lovell

Assistant Coach

Playing Career:

Lovell was recruited to Melbourne from Tasmanian club Glenorchy and in his debut season played in their losing Grand Final to Hawthorn Football Club. A ruck-rover, Lovell was handy near goals and in a game at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) against Richmond in 1993 he kicked a career best eight goals as his side won by a record 121 points.

The previous year he ran second in Melbourne's Best and fairest. Lovell was traded to West Coast for the 1996 AFL season and spent three years in their midfield before retiring.

Coaching Career:

He later became coach of the Sandringham Zebras and is currently an assistant coach at the Gold Coast SUNS.

Mark Riley

Assistant Coach

Coaching Career:

Mark Riley joined the GC SUNS as Assistant Coach in 2012, bringing more than 18 years worth of AFL and WAFL coaching experience. Riley, who had previously coached at Carlton, will fulfil the tole of forwards coach; bringing a wealth of knowledge and proven experience to the SUNS.

The West Australian began his AFL coaching career after joining the Fremantle Dockers in 1995 as a development coach, before progressing to an assistant coaching role in 1998. In 2001, Riley returned to the WAFL where he coached Claremont for two seasons, before heading to the Melbourne Demons in 2003 where he accepted a role on their coaching panel. During 2007, Riley was appointed caretaker coach for the final nine matches of the season after Neale Daniher stepped down as senior coach. In 2008, Riley joined Carlton where he spent five seasons with the Blues before joining the GC SUNS in 2012.

Brett Munro

Opposition Coach

Coaching Career:

Brett Munro joined the GC SUNS as Opposition Coach in 2011, bringing with him more than eleven years experience in a similar role. Prior to working at the SUNS, Munro had been serving Carlton as the team’s full time Opposition Coach and Analyst.

Munro’s role is based in Melbourne.

Malcolm Blight AM
 

Coaching Advisor

AFL Career:

Malcolm Blight AM has enjoyed tremendous success as both an AFL player and coach. Having played, coached and won a Brownlow Medal with the North Melbourne Football Club in the 70s, coached Geelong in three AFL Grand Finals and coached the Adelaide Crows to back-to-back Premierships in 1997-98, Blight is considered one of the AFL’s all-time Legends to have been involved in the AFL/VFL.  Originally joining the GC SUNS in 2009 as a board member, Blight stepped down as Director of Football to take up a part-time advisory role to GC SUNS coach Guy McKenna.

 

Simon Fletcher

Player Development Manager

Simon Fletcher joined the GC SUNS as Player Development Manager in 2010, and is a former AFL footballer who played with the Carlton Football Club and the Richmond Football Club, where he played a career total of 90 games.

Fletcher had worked with Leading Teams Australia as a leadership and development facilitator. His role includes the management of the SUNS Football Apprenticeship and Development and Welfare programs.

Ashley Prescott

Development Coach

Ashley Prescott started his role with the GC SUNS in early 2014.

Prescott played 128 games with Richmond and Fremantle between 1993-2001, before going on to coach Claremont in the WAFL (2004-07). Prescott continued his coaching career spending three years respectively with Essendon (2008-2010) and Fremantle (2011-13).

He brings a wealth of knowledge to the Gold Coast SUNS having played and coached at the elite level for over 20 years.

 

Josh Fraser

NEAFL/Development Coach

After harbouring an ambition to pursue coaching and development opportunities in the AFL following his 12-month absence from the game, Fraser returned to the Gold Coast SUNS at the start of the 2013 Pre Season as development coach, before accepting the role of NEAFL coach following the departure of Shaun Hart.

The former GC SUNS ruckman has a great understanding of the club, and has demonstrated a real hunger to develop the playing list.

 

 

 

Aaron Rogers

Academy Head Coach/ Development Coach

Academy Head Coach/ Development Coach
Aaron Rogers joined the GC SUNS as Academy Head Coach/Development Coach in 2014, the former NEAFL premiership player bringing with him more than 10 years of state level experience.

The former Australian Rules footballer will head the GC SUNS Academy Program under program talent manager Jason Torney.