‘A difficult time for everyone’: Hardwick breaks silence on relationship

Damien Hardwick says his breakup with wife Danielle has been “a difficult time for everyone” but insists his personal life should remain private.

Richmond coach Hardwick on Monday spoke publicly for the first time since news of his split with Danielle and new relationship with a club staffer became public earlier this year.

Damien Hardwick.Credit:Getty Images

The three-time premiership coach said he had discussed the matter with Tigers players when they returned to pre-season training this year but had turned his attention to a round one date with Carlton.

“The reality is these things happen in all walks of life. I’m very much of the opinion that people’s private lives should be just that: private. I know sections of the media won’t treat it that way but that’s how I’m treating it myself, first and foremost,” Hardwick told SEN.

“Myself and Danielle’s number one priority will, as it always has been, [be] our three beautiful kids. I’m very proud of the kids, the job myself and Danielle have done with regard to raising them.

“It’s been a difficult time for everyone. Out of respect for Danielle and my kids, my private life is something that I’m not very comfortable speaking about.”

Hardwick accepted that some Richmond players have strong relationships with Danielle and that there was a need to talk about the issue as a group before everyone could move on.

“The reality was the first day back I had to speak to the players about it. That’s something we do at the club. It was important we did so to get on with the business of preparing for round one. We always speak about things that [are] distractions in our lives, and distraction that may bring about out demise as a great team.

“We’re now fully focused on preparing for round one. The players are understanding of my situation and where we’re at.

“There’s a lot of staff and players that are incredibly close to Danielle and my family. The fact of the matter is, my entire family has been a massive part and will continue to be a massive part of the Richmond Football Club.

“This isn’t about taking sides, it’s just about making sure what’s best for everyone.”

But when repeatedly pushed for details, Hardwick politely looked to steer the conversation back towards on-field matters.

“I understand that the media has a job to do. But I also understand that my personal life is just that. I’m a football coach first and foremost,” he said.

Most Viewed in Sport

Source: Read Full Article