EAGLEHAWK coach Josh Bowe isn’t one to miss a game of football lightly.
But in the case of last week, it was an easy choice of family over footy for Bowe as he handed the coaching reins over to Linton Jacobs for the Hawks’ BFNL clash with Castlemaine.
And Bowe did so with good reason after his fiance, Nikki Hunt, gave birth to their first son, Sunny, on Friday.
“We knew it was going to happen either Friday or Saturday, so we had decided early in the week to go with the plan of re-structuring the coaching with Lino doing the role,” Bowe said this week.
“We had a clear plan in place rather than trying to re-jig things at the last minute if I had to duck off Saturday morning. We felt that was the most organised way to go about it.”
With Jacobs – this year’s reserves coach and senior assistant – calling the shots, the Hawks defeated Castlemaine by 106 points at Camp Reserve, but it’s back to normality for Eaglehawk this Saturday with playing coach Bowe back in charge.
“I’m looking forward to getting stuck back into it… just a little bit more tired than usual,” said Bowe, who after four years in Western Australia has returned to Canterbury Park this season.
Approaching the halfway mark of the season the Hawks sit in third position at 6-2, having won their past three games, but still with plenty of room for improvement according to Bowe, who along with team-mate Ben McPhee have been among the standout midfielders in the competition this year.
“We’ve always been confident we have the right mix when we get it together, but we’ve only played our best footy in patches so far this season,” Bowe said.
“To be 6-2 is promising and the way we’ve fought out some tough games has been really pleasing.
“We haven’t had a proper run at it yet in terms of getting our strongest team on the park and hopefully, that falls into place in the second half of the year.”
The Hawks should reach the midway mark at 7-2 as they round out their first half of the season with an away game against the winless Maryborough on Saturday.
Not that Bowe is taking a win against the Magpies – who led Gisborne at three quarter-time last week – as a given.
“I’ve always found it to be a tough trip over to Maryborough and that’s how we’ll be treating it on Saturday,” Bowe said.
“They look like they went reasonably well against Gisborne last week, so we’ll have to make sure we play well.”
Saturday’s game at Princes Park starts at 2.20pm.