The End of an Era or Is It?

Stephen Hayes

In this post, Wayne Fraser pays homage to outgoing women’s coach and Boomers FC legend, Steve Hayes.

After over 35 years with Boomers as a player and coach Steve Hayes says he is taking a less active role, but is he and will it last?

We thought that given Steve was “stepping back” from a full-time team coaching role it was an opportune time to reflect on the achievements of Boomers FC’s most successful coach.

We still see Steve up at the ground twice per week coaching both players and coaches and spending countless hours working with goalkeepers, which has become one of Steve’s many areas of expertise.

Steve is the hardest working football tragic in our area and holds, or has held, various positions within Football NSW, AWFA and Boomers FC including (but not limited to):

  • Director of Football NSW – current
  • President of AWFA
  • Vice President AWFA
  • NSW Academy Coach
  • NSW State Country Coach – male and female
  • AWFA Representative Coach – male and female
  • Northern Territory State Country Coach – female
  • SAP Coordinator and coach – current
  • NSW Coach Development Instructor/Assessor for AWFA – current
  • Boomers junior, senior men’s and senior women’s coach (on many occasions coaching up to 4 teams each year)
  • Boomers Committee member

Steve has been honoured by Football NSW with our highest award, the George Churchward Medal, and is a Life Member of Riverina Branch, Life Member of Albury Wodonga Football Association and Life Member of Boomers Football Club.

To us at Boomers, all the above achievements pale into insignificance when we consider the work he has done for our club over the last 35 years.

As a player Steve was a member of a golden age at Boomers who played in no less than 3 Cup Finals (none of which we won by the way), won 5 consecutive Riverina Cups (Riverina Senior Club Champion), 5 consecutive Fabris Cups (Myrtleford Hops and Tobacco Easter Festival) and made 2 NSW State Amateur Cup Semi Finals.

As a coach Steve’s record is unprecedented in AWFA and at Boomers he was named coach of the ½ Century at our 50 year anniversary and was the coach of our team of the ½ Century.

Steve has coached at Boomers for 27 years with only a 1 year break in that time. That year he concentrated on refereeing and was rewarded with the Centre Referees job for the Senior Men’s Cup Final.

In those 26 years Steve coached on all but 1 Cup Final Day and on one occasion coached 4 Cup Final teams on the same day.

Steve has coached or co-coached 2 Senior Men’s Cup Final wins and has a 70% win ratio with the Women’s team coaching in 18 of the 19 consecutive years the women made the Cup Final.

Teams that Steve has coached have won numerous League Titles and on many occasions won both League and Cup doubles. Without doubt we at Boomers owe Steve a great debt of gratitude and we know that all the players he has worked with, and continues to work with, appreciate his coaching, mentoring, leadership and friendship.

The women’s game is in a much better place for having Steve involved as he took coaching and development in women’s football to a new level, and his example has since been followed by other coaches. Steve Hayes now passes the reigns at Boomers to Steve Kusac and we know the women’s teams are in good hands.

Enjoy your “reduced coaching workload” Steve, but with grandchildren now playing we don’t think you will be able to rest for too long…

Photo courtesy of The Border Mail.