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St Kilda list & Football Department changes

The St Kilda Football Club has made a key appointment to ensure its football operations department retains the expertise and flexibility it needs to ensure the Saints remain market leaders.

Matthew Drain will become General Manager Football – List Management. Matthew will now focus on player contracts, management liaison, playing list development and recruitment.

As a result of this change, Greg Hutchison will move into the role of Football Manager. Greg will now assume responsibility for day-to-day operations management.

Previously Greg was Senior Coach of Casey Scorpions and Development Coach for the Saints. He worked closely with Ross Lyon and his assistant coaching staff during the season.

Greg has a long history in football and played 96 games for the Melbourne Demons between 1975 and 1984. Greg has had coaching roles at Melbourne and Richmond and was Football Manager at Richmond from 2002 – 2004.

Following a comprehensive review of the 2008 playing list, the Saints have made a number of changes to their playing list for the 2009 season.

In addition to the retirements of Robert Harvey and Fraser Gehrig the following players have been delisted; Jayden Attard, Matthew Ferguson, Michael Rix, Shane Birss, Charlie Gardiner, Glenn Chivers and Luke van Rheenan.

Jayden Attard was recruited by the Saints in the 2006 AFL Rookie Draft after spending his first two seasons at Brisbane. The 22-year old played 20 games for St Kilda before rupturing his ACL in Round 21, 2007 which unfortunately saw him miss the entire 2008 season.

Matthew Ferguson was selected with pick 22 in the 2002 AFL Draft. Hailing from Gippsland, the 24-year old Ferguson debuted in 2003 and played 12 games for the Saints, the majority after being re-drafted by the Club in 2006.

Michael Rix started his career on Hawthorn’s rookie list before the Saints drafted him with pick 49 in the 2005 AFL Draft. Aged 25 when recruited, Rix was brought into the side to bolster St Kilda’s ruck stocks and played 29 games for the Club and over 100 for VFL affiliate the Casey Scorpions.

The Saints acquired Shane Birss from the Western Bulldogs in exchange for pick 59 in the 2006 AFL trade period. The hard running utility has played 71 career games (20 for St Kilda) and was part of the 2008 NAB Cup winning side.

Charlie Gardiner arrived at the Saints in trade week, 2007 from Geelong. The 25-year old was originally recruited from the Sandringham Zebras and has played 60 career games (12 with St Kilda).

Rookie listed Glenn Chivers was recruited from the Oakleigh Chargers and while his aerobic capacity and ball winning skills were promising, the 19-year old did not debut for St Kilda.

Ruckman Luke Van Rheenen was drafted to St Kilda’s rookie list in 2007 but the 20-year old did not play a game for the Club.

Matthew Drain, GM Football – List Management said, “We’d sincerely like to thank all seven guys for their commitment and contribution to the Club and wish them all the best in their future endeavors.

The Club continues to review all internal and external candidates for the two assistant coaching roles made available by the departure of Anthony Rock and John Barker. Announcements will be made on their replacements as soon as the decisions have been made.