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Clydesdales make Colts coaching change

The Western Clydesdales have made a coaching change as the establishment of its Bulldogs Academy ramps up.

As part of the partnership with NRL club Canterbury Bankstown Bulldogs, which was announced in March, the Bulldogs are setting up an Academy in southwest Queensland to develop talented young players.

Hastings Deering Colts coach Blake Mara has been appointed as the full-time Bulldogs Academy coach to establish that development program.

As that important role is full-time, Mara will focus his attention solely on setting up the Bulldogs Academy, meaning he is unable to continue coaching the Clydesdales in the Colts competition. 

Given the partnership between the Clydesdales and Bulldogs, Mara will still be involved with the club and the under 21s squad.

Former Bulldogs player and experienced mentor Jason Alchin (pictured) will take over as head coach of the Clydesdales' Colts.

Alchin played 111 NSWRL games for the Bulldogs, St George and Wests in Sydney between 1985 and 1995 before getting into coaching.

He began coaching the Wests reserve grade team before gaining more experience with other Sydney clubs.

Alchin then moved north and continued coaching, including time in the Auswide Bank Mal Meninga Cup, on top of working in recruitment and pathways for the Bulldogs.

“I want to thank Blake for all of his hard work in coaching our Colts so far this season,” Clydesdales chairman Tony Coonan said.

“Establishing the Bulldogs Academy is incredibly important regarding player identification and development for the game in our region and the Clydesdales, so it’s very exciting that Blake can now throw himself into that role full-time.

“I’m also thrilled that we have been able to secure someone with Jason Alchin’s resume in the game to start as our Colts coach for the rest of the season.

“The future is bright for the Clydesdales and it will be great having Blake and Jason in these key roles developing talented players from across our region.”

This weekend, the Clydesdales will take on Tweed Seagulls in their Round 8 match. 


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