Finals Week 3 – Fremantle v Hawthorn: Ross Lyon – his coaching career and being my role model in the past


Ross Lyon has been the topic on talk back radio and social media for a few days.


I am interested in his records because I was shocked when I heard he left the Mighty Saints abruptly.


Before mentioning his coaching records, let me talk about how I thought about the once coach of the year.


While working with a year-long life coaching book, I learnt motivation and that focusing on strengths was important to improving myself. I thought Lyon focused on his players’ strengths to do the best coaching. Then I tried to learn from him, to focus on my strengths to improve myself, and to build a better life.


As a coach guiding St Kilda into two grand finals (at the time Fremantle had never played Grand Final), I had a lot of admiration for Ross.


But at the time I did not know:
– He did not blood young boys
– His coaching style was defensive.


As for the first issue, I guess he had been appointed to win the flag for St Kilda, so he needed best players to achieve his goal. But it works only for a short term. If it did not work in 2009, he should have trained young players to re-form a best team – like what Hawthorn has been doing.


The latter issue (defence) has been criticised by many footy experts – including our former coach Grant Thomas. In his The Age column, Thomas suggested that his club needed more attacking in the Grand Final. Sadly, Ross has not learned from the 2013 Grand Final against Hawthorn. His Dockers again lost to the Hawks on Friday night in a big final, only this time at Subiaco, and not the MCG.


Many footy fans urge that attacking is the key for the final campaign on the social media. I agree because it is the competition which is played by strong clubs.


Sadly Lyon cannot be my role model any more. But I think I have learned a lot from him in both positive and negative ways.


My adopted method of focusing on strengths is often disagreed, but focusing on overcoming weaknesses would ruin my strengths and cause a loss of self-esteem.


Seeing both your positive and negative sides is needed to help you improve, I think.


I admit I do not have much time to review about self life coaching work, but have to keep motivated. It would be hard to see, but my situations are improving slightly.


Because it is hard to see and recognise, it is easy to get annoyed or stressed. But if I see fast solutions, results would be what Ross has been facing in his senior coaching career.


His successor at St Kilda, Scott Watters, was not able to succeed as a senior coach, but I admire him encouraging young players.


Our current coach, Alan Richardson, is a good mentor of young boys. It is great and I admire his flexibility. His coaching style was a traditional defensive one last year but moved on to be a more offensive one this year.


I need to adopt his coaching method in my life!


Patience is needed for many situations. Sadly Lyon is not a man for long-term strategies in footy clubs.


Let’s seek positivity in our lives!




FREMANTLE:  2.1  4.4  8.4  10.7.(67)

HAWTHORN:  5.2  7.2  11.3  15.4 (94)



Fremantle: Walters 3, Griffen 2, Hill, Pavlich, Ballantyne, Barlow, Mayne.

Hawthorn: Rioli 3, Schoenmakers 2, Suckling 2, Roughead 2, Smith, Hale, Bruest, Hill, McEvoy, Duryea.


Umpires: Dalgleish, Stevic, Rosebury


Crowd: 41,508 at Subiaco.



About Yoshihiro Imagawa

Love, passion and pride are seen on the footy that is the biggest part of my life. 1. St Kilda Club member: I am a passionate and crazy Sainter. Just hope we will win the second flag soon, especially after Dogs and Tigers having ended long premiership draughts. 2. The Osaka Dingoes Player and Public Relations Officer: Player number 44 that I chose to honour Stephen Milne with my wish being like a small forward like him. Lenny Hayes' hardworking attitudes are adopted on my trainings and practices. Nick Riewoldt's great plays are in my player audiobook too. 3. Writing: Here on the Almanac and also on the World Footy News. My skills utilise on great footy websites.


  1. Hi Yoshi,

    I’m an Eagles fan and I’ll be in Kyoto on Saturday. Do you know anywhere I’ll be able to watch the game live?

    After finding one of your articles about Kyoto and after the grand finale read some of your articles and I like your passion for the Saints.

  2. Hi Mike,

    Thanks for your positive feedback on my articles.

    Sadly there is no place in Kyoto to watch the Grand Final. But Coolabah in Osaka is having live coverage of the GF. I am having a day off on Saturday to watch the footy over at the pub. If you want, we can go together. Please email me to tell me if you want or not. It would be great to watch the biggest footy of the year together.

    Also I would welcome any footy fan to watch the Grand Final at the Coolabah together. If you want to join, please email me.



  3. Simon Adams says

    A shame the game is not being shown somewhere in Kyoto. I think there would be enough Eagles and Hawks fans (or other AFL tragics) to make it a good afternoon. I checked with Pig and Whistle who have held it in past but they are not screening it. Will try and get to Osaka but can’t promise anything.

  4. Spot on Simon! We have many footy tragics in Kyoto. I have met many footy fans since I had moved here in March.

    If you are coming to the Coolabah, you can email me even on Saturday morning.



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