THE position of head coach for a professional sporting club like Hunters, must be occupied by someone with the highest level credentials of a professional coach.
The fact that QLD Intrust Super Cup is just below the NRL, clearly defines the position of the PNG Hunters head coach, is best suited for ex NRL players or coaches.
Essentially, having a head coach, with vast experiences at the NRL level, will immensely benefit the Hunters and rugby league in the country.
The NRL standards are of the highest order, thus PNGRFL and PNG Hunters must recruit someone who have had that experience and familiarisation of the NRL system to turn the PNG Hunters seasons around in 2020.
The Queensland Intrust Super Cup Competition is evolving and becoming more challenging, with the increased number of fringe NRL players taking part every year.
The 2019 QLD Intrust Super Cup Competition is not the same as it was in 2014, when PNG Hunters first entered.
It is a challenge for the PNG Hunters, as the rest of Qld based clubs are well established, and have close associations with the NRL clubs.
Gone are the days, where PNG Hunters recorded convincing wins, either by some thrashing score lines or last minute comeback wins from the jaws of defeats.
The past Hunters squad had shown the true PNG style trade mark tackles and hit ups, which intimidated opposition teams.
However, from 2018 to 2019, we have witnessed display of weak defensive structures and lack of attacking prowess by the Hunters playing squad. It is appalling for players to display habits of, not able to do the basic things right on the game day, which is unaccepted at a professional level of competition.
Michael Marum is a great coach, second to none, right now in PNG.
His experience as a player and coach at the Digicel Cup and at the International Level with the Hunters and Kumuls have set a benchmark, which many will only dream about.
PNG will remember his achievements and contribution he made to lift the standard of rugby league in PNG.
However, when Marum’s term as the Hunters head coach comes to end, the PNG Hunters board and management must ensure the search for the next head coach, must be advertised overseas to attract quality candidates.
The PNGRFL and Hunters board must be serious about getting a right person for the head coach.
Candidates with the wealth of NRL experiences as a player or as a coach, and has close ties with NRL clubs are key attributes the club should seriously consider.
I am not suggesting that, PNG Hunters club, spend big money to secure the services of ex NRL stars like Darren Lockyer or Johnathan Thurston. No! I’m sure deep down in the hearts of some retired NRL players or coaches, at least there is someone out there who would love the challenge to “Develop PNG into a power house rugby league nation in the world”.
The PNG Hunters have the world class facilities and is backed by a National Government, corporate sponsors and 8 million patriotic fans.
The club simply just need the right head coach, with right credentials to bring out the best out of the raw talents in PNG and help lift the standard of rugby league to the next top level.
The experience from the past can be used as the motivation, to strive for better results, which are achievable provided the PNG Hunters club is allowed to operate as a professional sporting business entity and not dictated by politics or self-indulging interests of a few.
Hunters Tok Stret