ROSS LYON has been Senior Coach at St Kilda since 2007 after an impressive playing career at the Fitzroy Lions. He had a number of afl trading cards issued and some are available at qualityafltradingcards.com.
Lyon was regarded as one of the Recruits of the year when he joined Fitzroy in 1985 , where he tallied 127 Games and kicked 112 Goals until his departure in 1994. During his first season he unfortunately suffered a serious groin injury when a ligament was torn from the bone. After more than 12 Months away from the game due to rehabilitation from this injury , Lyon returned to consolidate a very fine career, mainly as a forward.
One of Lyon’s main strengths was his uncanny ability to lay heavy tackles on opposition defenders in possession of the ball, and we can see this influence living on in his St Kilda’s players performances today. Ross Lyon built a reputation as a strong tackler, whilst also possessing silky skills and proving very evasive with his deft side-stepping. He was considered one of Fitzroys top-line players and represented Victoria when at his peak.
When it became obvious that Fitzroy’s future was in doubt, Lyon attempted to transfer to Sydney in 1995, however a foul-up in the drafting process saw him end up at Brisbane. Unfortunately another serious injury, this time to a knee , forced Lyon into premature retirement at only 28 years of age, after only 2 Senior Games with Brisbane.
Ross Lyon then entered Coaching Ranks as an Assistant Coach at Richmond for 4 years. He then built on this base with 4 years at Carlton, where he spent 3 of those years as coach of the Carlton VFL team. It was in 2004 that his good mate, Paul Roos offered Lyon a role as one of his Assistant Coaches at the Sydney Swans. AFL followers could see the stamp of Lyons work ethics in the harder tackling, heavy forward pressure on opposition defenders, and the stronger personal accountability adopted by each and every Swans Player.
Ross Lyon left his mark at the Swans , which saw the Team play off in 2 Successive Grand Finals- a nail-biting narrow victory over the West Coast Eagles in 2005, and a similarly close disappointing loss to the Eagles in 2006.
The St Kilda Saints who had promised so much for so long with many Star Players that warranted a Premiership victory, decided that Ross Lyon was their man, and appointed him their Senior Coach in 2007. Lyons impact was immediate, and he laid down strong and clear guidelines for every player. Those players who were not prepared to dedicate themselves to Lyons Team Guidelines were shown the door. Over many of the previous years there were many appointments as St Kilda’s Senior Coach, and there was a belief that a number of the Clubs star Players had too much input and weight around the Club in influencing whether Coaches stayed on.
St Kilda has been transformed under Lyon, and their outstanding 2009 Season where they were the defeated Grand Finallists, was one of the Best Home and Away Club performances in AFL/VFL History. The qualities that made Lyon such a fine player, combined with a group of Players that are craving success after the bitter taste of last Seasons defeat, should mean that the Saints have every chance in Season 2010 to add a Premiership Flag to their Sole Premiership Glory in 1966.
UPDATE– 15 September 2011- Ross Lyon today tendered his resignation as Senior Coach at the St Kilda Saints.
UPDATE– 16 September 2011- Lyon today confirmed acceptance of a lucrative offer as Senior Coach of the Frementle Dockers from the 2012 Season.
( Image courtesy of life.com ).