Bears strike early to land Mortimer as 2018 captain-coach

BEARING ALL: Tim Mortimer, pictured playing in this year's Group 10 All Stars side at King George Oval, will coach Blayney in 2018. Photo: NICK McGRATH

BEARING ALL: Tim Mortimer, pictured playing in this year's Group 10 All Stars side at King George Oval, will coach Blayney in 2018. Photo: NICK McGRATH

A desire to help teach the next generation of rugby league players in the region has landed Tim Mortimer the Blayney Bears’ captain-coach job for 2018.

The Group 10 club announced Mortimer as the Bears’ new mentor at the club’s 2017 presentation at Blayney on Friday night, Mortimer on deck to meet supporters and players.

Mortimer is on board to help the Bears improve on this season’s winless record, and while winning will be an obvious focus, so too will be imparting the vast knowledge he’s gained during stints in Parramatta’s lower grades, playing overseas in France and as Group 10 coach of the year with Hawks in 2013.

“I loved coaching when I was at Hawks and I suppose I’ve always been looking for another opportunity like that since,” he said.

“I’m getting closer to the end of my career and I want to give back.

“I’ve learned so much from my time in Sydney, it’s all sitting in my head, I’d love to be able to help kids coming through.

“When I was 18, I went ok in my team and I thought I knew the game. Then I went to Sydney and realised I had no I idea.

“I’ve got a bit of that knowledge now and a few contacts in Sydney and if I can help a few kids coming through on their path then that’s what I want to do.

“I feel like I can offer something that way.”

Mortimer said he’s always admired the close-knit Blayney club and was looking forward to being part of the Bears’ culture in 2018.

There’s current ties to the Bears too, with his cousin Charlie playing in maroon and white during 2017, while Glenn Mortimer, Tim’s uncle, won premierships with the club in first grade in 1990 and then 1993.

Mortimer said there was mutual interest from both parties after the premier league coaching job was advertised at the back end of 2017.

He’s played the last three seasons with junior club Orange CYMS, Sunday’s decider triumph against Oberon turning out to be a fitting send off in green and gold.

Mortimer said he’ll try and have a break from rugby league over the course of the next month or so before ramping up preparations for the Bears’ 2018 campaign.

One he's confident will be competitive, with or without new players.

“It’s a work in progress …. but I think Blayney has a good team,” he said, before adding 2017 captain-coach Will Ingram will be a more than welcome commodity next winter.

“I know him through footy and I admire him. I’d love for him to be part of the team. He’s a great leader and I hope he’s still around next year.”

The Bears also have a new president in the form of Tim Mooney, taking over the top job from Adam Hornby.

Mortimer said if anyone has interest in joining Blayney for 2018 to get in contact with him or the club.

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