Collins quashes Sandhurst speculation

ANDREW Collins has quashed talk that he will be Sandhurst’s new senior coach.

The Dragons announced late last week that they had parted ways with coach Brett Fitzpatrick and Collins’ name has been linked to the job since.

TOP OF HIS GAME: Andrew Collins is certain to remain at Bridgewater for the 2016 Loddon Valley Football Netball League season. Picture: DARREN HOWE

Collins stepped down as Bridgewater coach last month after guiding the club to a sixth-straight flag, but publicly stated he would remain with the Mean Machine as a player and as a development coach.

Collins put the Sandhurst speculation to bed on Tuesday, declaring his intentions for 2016 hadn’t changed. The former Richmond and Carlton midfielder will stay at Bridgewater and attempt to help the club win a seventh-straight LVFNL premiership.

“I don’t know where that talk is coming from, but I won’t be at Sandhurst next year,’’ Collins said.

“I’m a supporter of Sandhurst and hope that they get the best coach possible, but it won’t be me.

“Trying to win this seventh flag at Bridgewater is pretty important and it’s a great club… it’s not a club you want to leave in a hurry.”

Andrew’s father David coached Sandhurst to its most recent premiership in 2004.

“As strong as the lure is to be at Sandhurst, and I do want to play there in the future, Bridgewater is a tough place to leave,” Collins said.

Marc Lindsay has taken over the reins as senior coach of Bridgewater and Collins can’t wait to take on his new role.

“I’m excited about the development role I’m going to have with Bridgewater,’’ he said.

“I can have a real impact in helping the young players at the club.”

Collins, who won the Harding Medal for best and fairest player in the LVFNL this year, is in rehabilitation mode at the moment after undergoing a shoulder reconstruction a fortnight ago.

“It’s coming along okay,’’ he said.

“I’m in a sling for six weeks and then I’ll have a solid road back. I expect to be right to play round one.”

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