Garry Sciberras says he is looking forward to having his weekends back after more than two decades of nurturing young players through the Overnewton Auskick program.

The long-serving coach and Auskick district manager is retiring after 23 years of service during which he’s gone from parent helper to overseeing 18 centres around the state.

“I am turning 62 and it’s time to say goodbye to my beautiful Auskick family,” Mr Sciberras said.

“I started at Overnewton as a parent helper, helping teach our third son how to play football, teaching basic skills like marking, kicking, handball and scooping up the ball.

“I then became head coach and co-ordinator to district manager, looking after 11 Auskick centres in the north-west and western region to now looking after seven centres in the Melbourne metro region.”

He said being able to be part of children’s lives in educating them in mateship, sharing and life skills was what he enjoyed most from the experience.

“There is so much that I love about this task and responsibility … giving them opportunities to play this great game on the holy grail of sporting arenas, the MCG or Marvel Stadium and or playing at Visy Park,” Mr Sciberras said.

“Seeing their faces light up when they run onto the ground in their Auskick gear, or in the team colours of who is playing on the day.

“[And] Watching our children learn how to play the game and watching them develop into very good footballers and winning the major prize of a grand final.

“These are a few of the things that are my favourite.”