The final siren has called on Jason Fairall’s time as the GFCW Senior Coach after four and a half incredible years at the helm.
He leaves as a respected figure in the GFC community and will remain prominent in the history books as the Club’s first women’s premiership coach.
Jason said that while he is emotional about his departure, he feels confident about the team’s position within the competition.
“There is a hint of sadness in resigning from my role as the Glenelg FC Women’s Senior Coach, especially given the emotional investment my family has also made on this journey beside me. However, I feel now is the best time for the playing group to have a new voice and a new direction. It was always my intention to move on while the program was in a strong position, which is definitely the case,” he said.
“I would like to thank the Board and management for their overwhelming support in my time at Glenelg. Most importantly, I would like to thank the all the players, leaders, coaches and support staff who have played a massive role over the journey in creating an elite program. Their character, commitment, hard work and sacrifice are significant reasons as to why it is a strong program and a great place to be.”
The former Morphettville Park women’s coach commenced his role mid-season in 2018 with a focus on improving the basic skills of the team and empowering the playing group to have input.
“After finishing last in 2018, we totally rebuilt the squad, overhauled the program, placed a strong focus on player development, increased the number of coaches and support staff, and most importantly, developed a strong culture,” Fairall said.
He was hugely successful in his mission, transforming the women’s team from wooden spooners to premiership winners and consistent finals contenders.
With a total of 54 games under his belt, Jason has achieved 29 wins and seen the Tigers reach three finals series, with their first appearance being the semi-final in 2019. Then after placing fifth in the covid-interrupted 2020 season, Jason famously guided the team to the 2021 SANFLW Premiership.
And while the Tigers unfortunately lost in the preliminary final this year, the team was proud to reach new heights and win nine out of their twelve minor rounds – the highest percentage of wins in GFCW history. The women also obtained a record-high eight-game winning streak from Round 7, 2021 to Round 1, 2022.
Women’s captain and inaugural GFCW player Ellie Kellock spoke highly of Fairall’s contribution and also his involvement with enhancing the careers of several players who have been drafted to the AFLW during his time.
“Over the past four years Jason has had a tremendous impact on the success of the women’s program. The endless hours he has committed to get this program to where it is today, we will forever be grateful for. On behalf of the girls, I cannot thank Jason enough for all that he has done,” she said.
Glenelg Football Club CEO Justin Scripps also commended Jason for his achievements and ability to evolve the women’s program.
“Jason’s contribution in building our women’s program has been significant, not only in winning a premiership in 2021 but in establishing and driving high standards. We now have a culture in our women’s program that reflects our values as a footy club and a program that gives us every opportunity to deliver sustained success,” he said.
“The Club will be forever be in debt to Jason and his family for the time and effort he’s put into the Club.”
The Club wishes Jason and the Fairall family all the best in their future endeavours.