Paul Feltham

Paul Feltham (born 1 October 1948) is a sport psychologist and former Australian rules footballer and coach. He is best known for a short stint as caretaker coach of the Brisbane Bears in 1989.[1]

Paul Feltham
Personal information
Full name Paul Feltham
Date of birth (1948-10-01) 1 October 1948
Height 175 cm (5 ft 9 in)
Weight 78 kg (172 lb)
Position(s) Midfielder
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
1970–1976 North Melbourne 128 (78)
1978 Richmond 7 (8)
Total 135 (86)
Coaching career3
Years Club Games (W–L–D)
1989 Brisbane Bears 7 (5–2–0)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 1978.
3 Coaching statistics correct as of 1989.
Career highlights
Sources: AFL Tables,

Playing career

Early in his career, Feltham played for Box Hill in the VFA in 1967, Eastlake Football Club in the ACTAFL and Balmain Football Club in the NSWAFL. His talent was his tough, courageous determination and his quick handball. Feltham played as a winger and midfielder North Melbourne from 1970 to 1976. He played in the 1974 VFL Grand Final and was one of the best players in North Melbourne Football Club's first Premiership in 1975. He later joined Richmond in 1978, but his best football games were played at North Melbourne Football club during the '70s.

Coaching career

Feltham captain-coached Mordialloc in 1979, then left to coach West Canberra in 1980.[2][3]

Later in the 1980s he moved to Queensland, where he coached the University of Southern Queensland's Australian football team and the Morningside Football Club (QAFL), before joining the underperforming Brisbane Bears in a part-time role as sports psychologist for the 1989 season.

When incumbent coach Peter Knights was sacked with seven games remaining in the season, Feltham was surprisingly appointed caretaker coach ahead of any of the existing coaching panel. The Bears immediately rallied to win five of the remaining matches, which included an upset win over the eventual premiers Hawthorn, who only lost three matches over the home and away season.[4]

Feltham was not considered for the permanent coaching position for the following season, reportedly due to a clash with particular senior players[5] and certain club personnel, most notably football manager Shane O'Sullivan.[4] He was replaced by another caretaker coach, former coaching assistant and ex-Fitzroy player Norm Dare, for the 1990 season while the search for a permanent coach continued for 1991.

For most of the 1990s he disappeared from the spotlight, but reappeared in 1999 as an applicant for the vacant coaching role with Woodville-West Torrens. He applied for the same position again the following season.[6] He also applied for the coaching role with Hawthorn in 2004.[4] He was unsuccessful in each of these applications.

He is currently based in Canada, where he is coach of the London Magpies Australian Football Club, and is also a sports psychologist with AFL Canada's national side, the Northwind.


  1. "Hardie happy to look to his laurels". Melbourne: 17 July 2004. Retrieved 11 January 2008.
  2. Fiddian, Marc (2013). The VFA – A History of the Victorian Football Association 1877 – 1995. Melbourne Sports Books. p. 176.
  3. "Australian Football: The Magpies shape up well for 1980". The Canberra Times. ACT: National Library of Australia. 30 March 1980. p. 28. Retrieved 14 March 2015.
  4. Lane, Tim (31 July 2004). "Two-minute interview". The Age. Retrieved 29 October 2010.
  5. Hardie, Brad (24 May 2009). "Newman leadership must be questioned". Sunday Times. p. 61. Some of the players heard a rumour about Feltham that dated back 15 years prior and decided to get rid of him.
  6. Robertson, Doug (19 October 2000). "Fuller to win Eagles post today". The Advertiser. p. 94.
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