Rhyce Shaw is on hiatus from AFL, North Melbourne Kangaroos confirm

North Melbourne coach Rhyce Shaw is taking an indefinite break from football, the AFL club has confirmed.

Important points:

  • North Melbourne chairman Ben Buckley said the club is “very aware of the speculation about Shaw”
  • The club said they would support Shaw after “asking for some time and space outside of football”.
  • Buckley said the 2020 season was “a terribly busy and difficult year for everyone”.

In a sweeping statement at the end of the 2020 Kangaroo season, Chairman Ben Buckley said the team is “very aware of the speculation about Shaw.”

“We weren’t able to say anything because we respect the wishes of Rhyce and his family,” said Buckley.

“Rhyce asked for some time and space outside of football and we supported him during that time.

“We thank the media for their continued cooperation and trust that they understand that we cannot comment further at this time. In the meantime we will make further progress. “

Shaw, who made 237 games for Collingwood and Sydney before retiring in 2015, took the lead in North Melbourne for the 2019 season, replacing Brad Scott.

The team won only three games in the 2020 season, which Buckley described as “a terribly stressful and difficult year for everyone”.

No replacement for Shaw was mentioned in Buckley’s testimony, though the team hired John Blakey, who played more than 200 games in North Melbourne for over a decade in the 1990s and 2000s, as their senior assistant.

“He’s a person of great character, has had a wonderful coaching experience with the Brisbane Lions during their successful era, and more recently has been part of the foundation of the culture that led to the success of the Sydney Swans,” said Buckley.

“We will continue to add more resources and expertise to our coaching panel.”

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