Former North Ballarat Rooster Lachie George has voiced his disappointment around the draining 2017 VFL season he and his teammates endured and his frustration and anger towards certain members on the club’s board.
George, who will continue his VFL career with Williamstown, did not mince his words when it came to discussing the frustrating year that was for the Roosters. It started with a 188-point round one belting in April and ended with the club being stripped of its VFL licence in September for governance issues.
George was critical of certain members on the board, believing decisions were made to force the hand of AFL Victoria in booting the Roosters out of the competition.
The 29-year-old spoke to The Courier with refreshing honesty, giving a scathing appraisal of board members he felt did little to ensure the club’s survival in the VFL competition, and anyone who argued otherwise was “full of crap”.
"(I’m) sad, frustrated and a little bit angry towards people who don't really have any idea about the VFL, they've come from a narrow-minded background, there's lots of reasons why I say that,” George said.
"They were making decisions to make AFL Victoria make a decision to pull them out of the competition and if they try to argue against that, they're full of crap.
"They've actually affected people's lives pretty hard...and to be quite honest, there's people on the board that have absolutely no idea how to run a business, let alone trying to run a VFL organisation.
"We thought we had enough good people around the place that could take it on, unfortunately there's a few narrow-minded board members...they have their little ways of trying to pull little stunts that genuine and ethical people wouldn't have a bar of.”
The Roosters played the 2017 season with a cloud of uncertainty hanging over their heads, that uncertainty became reality in September, but the toll the year took on the players and staff was something that cannot be compensated.
George said one of his main concerns was for the Greater Western Victoria Rebels hopeful of being drafted and for those overlooked and still hoping to stay in the eye of AFL recruiters.
George raised the prime example of Flynn Appleby.
Appleby played just one VFL game in 2017, lining up against Collingwood.
Appleby went to the back line and lined up on Kayle Kirby, who at the time was the league’s leading goal-kicker. Appleby kept Kirby to one goal was named the Roosters second best player.
Where did Appleby get drafted to in the AFL Rookie Draft? Collingwood.
"What about these Rebels boys that never got drafted - where do they go? That's the real disappointing part from my point of view.”