PATRICK Bowden says he is excited to be inheriting what is touted as one of the most talented lists in the Eastern Football League after being unveiled as Norwood’s new coach.
Bowden’s challenge will be to get the Norsemen back in finals — they haven’t made the five since their 2015 grand final loss — and premiership contention.
His predecessor Denis Knight labelled Norwood’s 2017 campaign as a “massive failure” after Norwood fell out of finals contention with a couple of months left in the season.
Bowden was announced as Norwood’s new coach late last week, departing Division 3 club Ringwood after three years at Jubilee Park to lead a top-tier outfit.
“I know it is a good list, been told by a lot of people that it is a good list so I’m looking forward to getting in there and getting to know the players,” Bowden said.
“Talented lists are one thing but creating great teams is another thing.
“Norwood are a successful club, they’ve done really well over a long period of time so it is just exciting to get the job and hopefully do a bit better and add value to the club.”
Bowden took Ringwood to consecutive preliminary finals over the past two years but suffered a straight sets exit this season after leading at three-quarter time in both its finals.
“I think the time I have spent coaching Ringwood has made me a better coach and I’m hoping I can take my skills and put them in play at another footy club,” Bowden said.
“It is always a hard decision to leave but going to Norwood is a new challenge for me so I want to take that challenge and see how far I can take it.”
Norwood logged just four wins from the opening 12 rounds but won its last six games of the season.
“I look at that and I see a bunch of blokes who are just looking to open up their shoulders a bit and just play some free-flowing footy and I’ll be letting them do that at times,” Bowden said.
“Footy is a game that needs to be played on a whim as well as a game plan so I’m looking forward to just letting them go.”