Scotland steps down

Heath Scotland has stood down as coach of Sunshine. (Supplied)

Tara Murray

Sunshine has been left shocked by the sudden departure of coach Heath Scotland five rounds into the Western Region Football League division 1 season.

With the Kangaroos sitting 1-4 and coming off a massive loss to Altona on the weekend, Scotland made the decision to step away from the club he has coached since 2021. He was contracted to coach the side next season as well.

Kangaroos coach Xavier Hayes confirmed that Scotland had made the call to move on.

“It’s a bit of a shock for us,” he said. “The results for us haven’t been what he wanted and I guess after Saturday it wasn’t what he wanted and he called it quits.

“We’re looking forward to the rest of the season and we wish him well. He has been here two years and he’s done a lot of hard work and we’re thankful.”

Assistant coach Chris Atkins will take over the coaching role. Atkins, a former player at the club, had been appointed Yarraville-Seddon coach for the cancelled 2020, but never coached a game.

“He gets his chance as senior coach,” said Hayes said.

“Hopefully he’ll galvanise the group going forward. There’s still a lot of rounds left and hopefully it can be positive going forward.”

Hayes said they had high expectations heading into the season following their recruiting, but having lost a number of players too, it has evened itself out.

He said their win against St Albans showed what they could do.

“We beat St Albans with some great football,” he said. “Football can turn around in a week.”

Atkins first game in charge will be on Saturday against ladder leaders Caroline Springs.

Hayes said outside of the senior results, things were going really well at the club.

“The reserves had a close game against Altona who are one of the top sides,” he said.

“The junior program is going really well and there’s a lot of excitement and positives.”