- Written by Walter Pless
- Published: 24 November 2013
Photo (L-R): Paul Woodham, Knights president, Shae Hickey, and Knights coach Chris Hey [PlessPix]
The worst-kept secret in local football was that South Hobart’s Shae Hickey had left the club to join Glenorchy Knights for the 2014 Victory League season.
The Knights held a belated media conference at KGV Park this morning to announce Hickey’s move.
Photo: Shae Hickey has won 8 league titles in the past 9 seasons [PlessPix]
South Hobart had news of the move on their website weeks ago and everyone was in the know, but I guess it took the Knights until today to get all the ducks in a row and announce the move.
Hickey, the vice-captain of Victory League champions South Hobart, will not be able to sign officially for the Knights until New Year’s Day, 2014.
He has won eight league titles in the past nine seasons - two with Glenorchy Knights under coach Eamonn Kelly, followed by six with South Hobart under coach Ken Morton.
Hickey was the Vic Tuting Medal winner in 2012.
Hickey spent six seasons at South Hobart, winning five Southern Premier League titles, three State titles, and the inaugural Victory League and Victory Cup titles.
“My time at South Hobart has been amazing, and in the last six years the club has achieved more than I could have possibly hoped for when I initially arrived,” Hickey said today.
“I feel like I have developed as a player during my time at South Hobart thanks to first class coaching and I have been fortunate to play with some of the best Tasmanian players in the last decade.
“I wanted to leave South Hobart while I was playing well and had nothing but positive feelings towards the club and its people.”
Photo: Knights captain Jayden Hey (left) welcomes Shae Hickey to the club [PlessPix]
Despite playing well and enjoying his time at South Hobart, Hickey saw 2014 as an appropriate time for a move.
“I have reached a stage of my career where I need rejuvenation, and I believe that the Glenorchy Knights are able to provide me with new challenges and a renewed drive,” he said.
Hickey began his senior football career at Glenorchy Knights in 2001 at 16 years of age.
“Before I played for South Hobart, I had five fantastic years at the Glenorchy knights, and it was only geography and friendship that lured me away at the end of 2007,” Hickey said.
The transfer means Hickey will be reunited with the coach that gave him his first senior start.
“Chris [Hey] is the coach that plucked me off the bench of the under 23s and promoted me to the firsts,” he said.
“I believe that the Glenorchy Knights took a large step forward last year and produced a mature and aesthetic brand of football.
“They have some exciting players and a passion that means that they can never be discounted.
“I strongly believe that in 2014 the Glenorchy Knights will go to another level.
“We have a dedicated and knowledgeable coach, the committee is helping to instil the level of professionalism needed to succeed, and the playing list is really gathering momentum.”
Glenorchy Knights President, Paul Woodham, welcomed the homecoming of Hickey.
“Glenorchy Knights are extremely pleased to welcome Shae back to the club, re-joining us for what we see as an exciting period for the club moving forward,” Woodham said.
“Shae’s playing resume speaks for itself, but one of the motives behind us chasing Shae was his strong leadership and what his football wisdom could bring to our young playing group.”
Photo: Glenorchy Knights coach Chris Hey [PlessPix]
Knights’ 2013 captain and Mitsubishi Motors Best and Fairest winner, Jayden Hey, has been linked with a move to Melbourne, but will share the captaincy with the incoming Shae Hickey if he does remain at the club in 2014.
“We felt it was fitting to have Jayden [Hey] alongside Shae [Hickey] in the role as he can learn from Shae’s wealth of experience and develop well as a leader,” Woodham said.
“We feel as dual captains they can function really well as the leaders of our club.”
Glenorchy Knights coach, Chris Hey, said he pursued Hickey’s signature for years and is excited to have finally got his man.
“Shae [Hickey] is a player you can build a team around,” Chris Hey said.
“His game sense and ability to pick out a pass is exceptional.
“He has special qualities that very few players possess.
“We believe we have a good young squad at Glenorchy that showed that in glimpses this season, but the addition of Shae [Hickey] will only assist their development and we are hopeful we will see a rise from our group in season two of the Victory League.”