Same name but different era for Hawks
By NICK MCGRATH
IN 1993 Orange Hawks appointed Peter Mortimer as coach of the two blues’ premier league outfit in a bid to resurrect the struggling club’s hopes of Group 10 glory.
But over the same time, Mortimer helped a club on the brink rebuild, become financial and mould a culture that matured into a first grade premiership in 1999.
Fast forward nearly two decades, and Hawks are again turning to a Mortimer to rise to the top.
Tim Mortimer will captain-coach the two blues in the 2013 Group 10 premier league competition, replacing James Wynne in the post after the former French international declined the role for a second term through work commitments.
Mortimer, who last played with Hawks in 2005 along side older brother James, said the opportunity to coach a top grade side in Group 10, a competition establishing an ever-growing reputation in Sydney, was too good a challenge to pass up.
The fact his father signed on to the post 20 years ago just adds a little more pedigree to the appointment.
“Dad’s coached at Hawks before, he’ll have a big influence on how I coach and I’m sure he’ll be willing to help out,” Mortimer said.
The two blues’ run in 2013 begins on Wednesday night at Perry Oval with the club’s first training run at 6pm.
“I want to try and put myself in a position to get the best out of myself and the club this season,” the fullback or centre added.
“I want to take the club as far as I can. It’ll be tough, the standard has increased heaps since I last played here last. There’s a lot of good players out here, you only have to look at the calibre of NRL guys moving out here.
“I played 13 years with CYMS (through juniors) and they’re a great club, but Hawks offered me a coaching opportunity and that’s something I’ve always wanted to take up.
“It’s the challenge that I want,”
Mortimer senior isn’t the only experience Tim will draw on throughout the winter.
A premiership winner in France’s Elite Two Championship with Racing Club Albi XIII, Mortimer has been tutored by the likes of NSW Cup wining coach Rip Taylor and, as part of the Eels’ top squad in 2010, former Parramatta coach now referees boss Daniel Anderson.
Anderson is renowned as one of the game’s best thinkers and in 2010 Mortimer believes he doubled his knowledge of the game listening to the little things Anderson brought to his attention.
“I thought I knew the game before I was coached by Anderson,” the 26-year-old said.
“He is such a good coach.”
Mortimer played with Valley United in the Manly premiership last season and will move back to Orange on the Australia Day weekend after landing a job as a physical education teacher at James Sheahan Catholic High School.
“We’re going to have a good side next year,” he said.
“Guys like Todd, Buns... there’s a lot of the boys that were when I played last time. I’ll be relying on those older guys to set the standard and really become leaders of the club.”