'If we don't win it's a failure'
INCOMING Brothers Ipswich women's coach Liam Bromilow has called for a 'now or never' approach to the upcoming SEQ Division 1 season with a conspicuous lack of silverware in the trophy cabinet his first port of call.
"From the get-go I've said to them, with some of the experienced girls getting a little older . . . now is as good a time as ever to take out the comp, with the talent pool that is here,” the new coach said.
"If we don't win this season, in a sense it's a bit of a failure.”
It was a strong opening statement from the new man in charge at Brothers, who took the reins from Becky Jones and Nat Dwyer this season, but an understandable one considering the depth of talent at his disposal.
Brothers' core group of players includes Broncos captain and two-time World Cup winner Ali Brigginshaw, reigning Dally M Medallist Brittany Breayley, and fellow Jillaroos Amelia Kuk and Kody House.
The club lost Bronco Maitua Feterika to West Brisbane and CJ Sims to Gold Coast this year, but had a win in signing breakout Indigenous All Star Terri-Ann Cain.
The 20-year-old made headlines earlier this month when she was forced to catch a 17-hour bus trip from Brisbane to Sydney just to make training camp.
With a background in rugby union, and previously a junior Queensland 100m and 200m record holder, Cain has all the potential in the world and Bromilow is keen to harness it.
"She's got speed to burn coming from an athletics background . . . her goal is to eventually make the Jillaroos,” he said.
Key utility Jessica Carey may be out for the season with an ACL injury, but Brothers' depth is greater than it has been in the past and there is a sense of expectation within the group.
"We started (pre-season) three weeks before Christmas, and now we're into our (fourth) week after Christmas,” Bromilow said.
"We've been getting 20-25 to training each night. Talking to coaches from other clubs they're getting 10-15, so that's a bonus.”
Bromilow comes to Brothers from Goodna - formerly the club's strength and conditioning coach - and most recently was coach of the Samoa Queensland Women's team.
As a school teacher, he has also coached multiple school representative sides.
He also has roots in triathlon, where he spent four and a half years as head coach at the Gold Coast Academy of Sport.
But Bromilow still appreciates having senior players make his coaching life easier.
"Obviously having Ali and Brittany, two of the best in the world, is a big plus for us,” Bromilow said.
"Then there's Lala (Kuk) and Kody as well, they're all such a good influence for the girls. I can run the training and the drills, but they provide the little bits of information the girls can feed off.”
Brothers are still actively recruiting, with Bromilow hoping to further bolster the roster particularly for the representative period when his side will be picked clean.
"Having no under-18 team we've had to look outside the club a bit (in recruitment),” he said.
"We do have some younger girls who will probably not play every week, but we'll need them in games especially when the rep season comes around.
"We would have liked to recruit a few more 18-19-year-olds.”
With his S&C background, Bromilow said the bulk of the pre-season was about "working a lot on fitness and speeding up our play”, adding Brothers would take a leaf out of rivals Burleigh's book in that regard.
"It's why Burleigh keeps winning, they play a fast style of footy,” he said.
"We also need to take more control of the game with our tackle techniques. Watching some of the games from last year, we've identified some areas to work on in the pre-season.”
The competition is expected to begin at the end of March. Before then, Bromilow has organised trials against Tweed Heads and at this stage, the Women's Defence Force team.