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Shake up for Fremantle's coaching structure

Peter Sumich, game day coach of the Dockers, addresses the team at quarter time during the 2014 NAB Challenge match between the Fremantle Dockers and the West Coast Eagles at Arena Joondalup, Perth on February 18, 2014. (Photo: Daniel Carson/AFL Media)
Peter Sumich is moving to a development role with the Dockers

EXPERIENCED Fremantle assistant coach Peter Sumich has been named the new senior development coach of the Dockers as part of a restructure of the coaching department.

The Dockers lost their long-time senior development coach Simon Lloyd at the end of last season, as well as midfield coach Brett Kirk.

They added David Hale, Brent Guerra and Anthony Rock to the coaching staff, but the coaching structure has changed significantly for 2016.

Hale and Rock will work with Sumich and Roger Hayden in the development team.

Hale said the experience that Sumich had acquired as an assistant and line coach at both West Coast and Fremantle over the past 15 years was going to be invaluable for the development team.

"It'll be a huge advantage for us," Hale said.

"He's got a wealth of knowledge. I'm sure he can impart some of that onto us with the amount of time he's spent around good footy programs."

The three-time Hawthorn premiership player has already begun working with the key forwards and ruckmen since arriving in Perth just ahead of pre-season starting.

Hale said coaching was a career choice he began thinking about in the latter stages of his career with Hawthorn.

"I'd been doing a teaching degree for the past four or five years," Hale said.

"So teaching and coaching have a lot of similarities. A lot of senior coaches have come from a teaching background.

"In terms of me coaching at an AFL level, in the last couple of years as your career winds down you start to think about it. Obviously when the opportunity came up to work under Ross (Lyon) it was something I was keen to go with."

Simon Eastaugh, who was previously the ruck coach at the Dockers, will team up with former development coach Marc Webb as midfield coaches.

Mark Stone, who was the stoppage coach last season, will now take charge of the Dockers' forward line.

Guerra and Michael Prior are the two defensive coaches.

Hale and Guerra were premiership teammates at Hawthorn.

The Hawks have been the Dockers' nemesis in September over the last few seasons but Hale said Fremantle didn't need to change too much to overhaul the Hawks.

"Obviously they've been around the mark the last few years," he said.

"Hopefully there are a few concepts and ideas we can bring in. We're not revolutionising the game-plan or anything like that.

"I think a lot of the fundamentals they do pretty well, so it's just tinkering with a few things here and there.

"In the end they were three or four goals short of a Grand Final spot last year, so there's not a lot they need to change drastically."