Murray has decided to not see out his contract through to the London Olympics in 2012 and is happy with the decision and timing given it still gives his replacement plenty of time to prepare for the Olympics campaign.


Murray dismissed talk of disharmony in the ranks between himself and the players after a successful six years in charge where he took the Hockeyroos to the 2006 Commonwealth Games gold, two Olympic silver medals and a World Cup silver and bronze.

“It’s probably time for someone else to have a go and this is a young group, and it gives the next coach time to do something with them prior to London,” Murray said.

“It is hard of course because I have spent the last 20 years doing this and I have enjoyed it, and still enjoy it, but I do think it is the right time.

“What a new coach will do is bring in fresh ideas and the players will respond. That doesn’t mean they don’t respond now, they do, and they are still a good bunch of girls to work with.”

His decision comes after a disappointing recent World Cup in Rosario, Argentina for the Hockeyroos where they missed the semi-finals but beat Korea to finish fifth, the lowest placing since sixth at the 1986 World Cup.

Murray is still happy with the team announced with 11 Commonwealth Games debutants and is confident of adding a third gold medal in just the fourth time it has been held at the Games.

England, New Zealand and India, who finished third, seven and ninth respectively at the World Cup, will provide the toughest opposition.

“It’s a good team and one that’s capable of winning. We’ve got a couple of good opposition teams in England, New Zealand and India, but this team is certainly up for it,” he said.

“We won the gold in 2006 and think we are capable of winning it again, that’s the pressure that we put on ourselves rather than it coming from external sources.”

Captain Madonna Blyth will have even more leadership responsibility following the retirements of Hope Munro and most recently Kim Walker after the World Cup, and with defender Teneal Attard out with a knee injury, but is confident the team will win gold again.

“We were a little bit disappointing in Argentina, but there’s always enough motivation for the Commonwealth Games. As a hockey player it’s always one of your favourite events to go to, but there was a little bit more out of Argentina,” Blyth said.

“Saying goodbye to a head coach is also something that you want to do to the best of your ability and for us that means winning gold, and sending him out on a positive winning note.”