Walters Not A Victim Of Budget Cuts

Melbourne - Kevin WaltersBy STEVE MASCORD

MELBOURNE Storm officials say the departure of assistant coach Kevin Walters was not related to an administrative restructure at the club and he will definitely be replaced.

When coach Craig Bellamy was asked on Thursday about changes under the premiers’ new owners, he mentioned former international Walters as one staffer who would be departing.

But according to football manager Frank Ponissi, Bellamy was merely using Walters as an example of personnel changes occurring at the club and not implying there was any link.

“That suggestion is 100 per cent incorrect,” Ponissi tells Fairfax Media. “Kevvy left for personal reasons only.

“We are disappointed but totally understand his reasoning. And yes, he will be replaced.”

New Storm CEO Mark Evans revealed earlier in the week that some senior management positions would evaporate under a new structure that had five departments reporting to him.

When asked if he was concerned about the impact of these changes on football operations, Bellamy said: “Hopefully not too much.

“We’ve sort of been told by the owners there won’t be too many changes in the footy department. There’ll be some changes, personnel-wise. We already know Kevvy Walters is leaving.

“There might be a couple more changes personnel wise but hopefully the structure and what we’ve got in place will stay and hopefully we might even find a couple of little ways to improve it.

“We’re pretty sure that will be the case. It’s been a bit of a breath of fresh air having the new owners around . It’s obviously something different.

“As I said, they’ve been very, very supportive and hopefully it will stay that way.”

Filed for: SYDNEY MORNING HERALD

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