Sat. May 28th, 2022

Adelaide coach Matthew Nicks has been rewarded for his promising start to life at Crows, where he has been given a two-year contract extension.

The former Port Adelaide and Greater Western Sydney assistant is now locked in Adelaide until the end of 2024 – a testament to the impressive work he has done at Crows since taking on a colossal task.

When the Nicks arrived at the Crows after the 2019 season, the former 175-game Swan took over at a club that had become number 12 and 11 in 2018 and 2019, respectively, after losing the grand finale in 2017.

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The Crows also lost six players during the 2019 low season, many of them key players, with Eddie Betts, Sam Jacobs, Josh Jenkins, Hugh Greenwood, Cam Ellis-Yolmen and Alex Keath all leaving. In return, the club received only young Port Adelaide forward ruck Billy Frampton and a touch of draft pick.

And while Adelaide was awarded the wooden spoon in a season of three victories in 2020, they finished in 15th place in a campaign with seven winners in 2021, making progress with their reconstruction and surprising many experts.

The Nicks also bled 18 players in the AFL during his first two seasons with the Crows, including rising stars Fischer McAsey, Riley Thilthorpe, Harry Schoenberg, James Rowe and Luke Pedlar.

“The whole club is heading in the right direction and it stems from a willingness to work hard,” Nicks said.

“We have gathered the right people, from coaches to high-performing medical and welfare staff, to create an environment where our players can reach their potential.

“Last season we showed glimpses of what we want to produce consistently in the future, and overall we saw a young group develop and do something about where we are trying to get to.

“There was growth on the pitch from every player and the new guys we’ve brought in over the last few weeks will make us better.

“The players have returned to training in fantastic condition. They have put their heads up and gone to work during their break, which gives the coaching staff and myself great optimism for the future.”

Adelaide CEO Tim Silvers had high praise for the Nicks.

“There are real buy-ins from players, coaches and staff to the relationships and standards that Matt operates,” Silvers said.

“His leadership style is exactly what we need when thinking about the development of our playgroup, and he creates a culture that is supported by people who have a selfless approach.”

The Crows open their 2022 campaign in a clash with Fremantle at the Adelaide Oval on March 20th.

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