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KB in the Lions' den

KEVIN Brooks had high hopes for Central Districts when he took the job three years ago of raising the SA Premier League’s worst performer to a competitive entity.

Friends and colleagues warned him he was “on a hiding to nothing” because after years in the bomb shelter, the Lions required a significant culture change.

KB loves a challenge though.

He logged three years in the NBA, then came to the NBL and grasped a championship and a Larry Sengstock Medal in his first year.

A second championship with the 36ers and some great years in Adelaide eventually led him to settling here, retiring as a player and moving to marriage, parenthood and, of course, coaching.

As an interim at Woodville’s men’s team, he took the Warriors to a championship.

NBL assistant coaching and NZ NBL coaching followed before sitting alongside Joey Wright as the Sixers headed into the 2013-14 Grand Final.

In 2013, he also took on one of the Premier League’s less coveted roles with the Lions.

Unfortunately for Brooks and the club, the process of changing a culture means changing some of the personnel.

That never goes over well. Five weeks ago, the club told Brooks he would not be reappointed and planned to shunt him aside for an interim to see out the season.

The players said they would not play without their mentor at the helm so KB committed to see out his contract – which concludes in October, even though the PL regular season ends tomorrow night.

On Monday, the story of Brooks’ time at Centrals hit the news and the Lions reacted by terminating his contract for being in breach of the “no public criticism of the club” rule.

But here’s the rub.

He can coach tomorrow night’s last game.

THEN he’s gone.

Well, seriously, what is the point of this dismissal then?

He was going at the end of the season anyway, so now he’s going after tomorrow night’s game which, um, is, the end of the season.

Central contends in the process of sifting through some of the club’s lesser lights, Brooks’ senior program had been reduced to 11 players to field in both PL and reserve competitions.

Kind of a Catch-22. He was supposed to change a culture of losing but in the process of losing some of the players responsible for that culture, he lost his job.

It’s not as cut-and-dried as it seems - nothing ever is – but the club was more competitive this year, jagged some important wins and had some narrow losses.

Now it has to rebuild (again).

“I’m not angry or bitter,” Brooks said.

“It’s time to move on.”

So it is, for both parties. Just not sure where the Lions can go next to move out of the depths their women so long have occupied.


He’ll land on his feet.

Here’s the story which set off the “dismissal” which still sees Kevin coaching tomorrow!

Jul 31

Content, unless otherwise indicated, is © copyright Boti Nagy.