Reigning Central Highlands Football League premier Waubra has been hit with a massive blow to its 2020 campaign, losing a 150-plus-game veteran of the club.
Premiership captain and club champion Tom Nash has decided to part ways with the club after nine seasons, four of which he served as captain, to head to North Ballarat City in the Ballarat Football League.
Speaking to The Courier, Nash said the decision was not an easy one to make.
"It was certainly really difficult," he said.
"It took me a long time to think about what I wanted to do with footy and why I wanted to play."
Nash, who has played all his junior and senior football with the Roos, winning premierships in 2011 and 2019 said he is satisfied with what he has been able to achieve with the club.
"After my stint at Waubra - I'd been there since I was 18, I'd never done anything other than that footy-wise - I thought to myself I'm really satisfied with what I've been about to do at the club, particularly with a couple of premierships and the one this season was just the icing on the cake.
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"It meant a lot to me to win it with one of my best mates, Matt James, as coach and for me to be the captain of that was the highlight of my life so far.
"Waubra means a lot to me, I think it's one of the greatest clubs anyone could be a part of... I've made a lot of lifelong friends there and it's going to be an adjustment to move on."
Waubra president Simon Toll said he wished the two time best and fairest winner all the best and added the door would always be open to Nash if he ever wished to return.
"He's had a stellar career at Waubra," Toll said.
"He just wants to further his footy and we're going to support him in that venture. He's got great ties with the club, he's a very humble man so we just wish him the best and hope he comes back one day."
Club vice president Scott Baker echoed Tolls sentiments, adding he is confident the Roos would remain competitive despite the loss of Nash.
"We're obviously very confident with our side and the young guys we've been developing," Baker said.
"We're also talking to a number of recruits, so while he's going to be a tough player to replace we know that we can put a strong team together and still be right up there next year."
Nash, 27, said the biggest thing he is looking forward to as he moves to North will be the physical challenge of getting a senior game with the club.
"What I'm particularly excited about is just trying to work towards getting a senior game... a lot of people say the style of footy is a lot faster so I'm looking forward to the challenge of getting my body right to adjust to the new style of play," Nash said.
Bringing a wealth of experience into the young playing group at North, Nash hopes he can develop further as a leader in his new surroundings.
"I'd like to think I can bring a bit of leadership and whatnot to a young playing group.
"I'm still always learning how to be a better leader and I think this will be a good experience for my leadership skills, coming into a young list and seeing if I can help out."
Nash will reconnect with North coach Shane Skontra, who coached the Roos to a premiership in 2011.
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