St George Illawarra Dragons Assistant Coach Jason Demetriou admits he believes ‘the Club is moving forward’.
Demetriou recently joined the Red-and-Whites as joint-Assistant Head Coach alongside Ben Hornby and Dean Young after filling a vacancy left by Ian Millward’s appointment as the Club’s Director of Rugby League Pathways.
The former North Queensland Cowboys Assistant Coach revealed that an in-depth discussion with Dragons Head Coach Paul McGregor about the latter’s direction for the Club was all that was needed to for him to join his childhood team.
He is now focused on playing his role as the team’s attacking coach to help make those visions a reality.
“It was a very exciting process especially after sitting down with Paul and hearing what his vision for the Club was and how he thought my role could fit in with it,” said Demetriou.
“I am a local boy who grew-up wanting to play for the Dragons and to now being here helping to coach them is a dream come true.
“I am here as the attack coach working with Paul to oversee the attacking side of things which is similar to what I did at my previous role with the North Queensland Cowboys.
“Looking around, I think we have a very good roster and have strengthened it very well during the off-season break and you can see that the Club is moving forward.
“A key thing about making a decision to move to a new club is looking at how you as an individual can help improve the team and I hope my experience can do that.
“There is also a team here that I believe in and that is the case with all the players here training really well.
“On paper we have a good side that can achieve good things.”
Demetriou will also oversee responsibilities as Head Coach of the Illawarra Cutters in the NSW Cup, which is a role he used to having previously steered the helm with the Northern Pride in the Queensland Cup.
The Hurstville-native is aware that his main focus is not only about steering the team to victory but also getting players within the playing-ranks ready to play first-grade when required.
“I have a good understanding of what the players will require and how tough it is to be a part-time player balancing work commitments and then backing it up playing,” said Demetriou.
“It’s a little different here at the Dragons as we have a lot more players who will feedback into the Cutters but I see that as a positive rather than a negative.
“I’ll be able to work with those guys straight after a game and in the early parts of the week.
“My role as Head Coach of the Cutters is to get the players up to speed and ready to play first-grade.
“While we do want to win games the most important thing individually is that they get their opportunity in first-grade and are able to take it.
“That’s one of the first things I’ll be discussing with the players as I’m here to both help them improve as a player and get them to play as much first-grade as they can.”