IT was the conversation on the verandah of the touch tower overlooking Tuffins Lane that provided the poignant location for Min Cotter and Brent and Sonya Steep to make one final decision.
Twenty-four hours earlier the fields below had been abuzz with thousands of players competing at the senior State Cup.
"I sat down the day after the senior State Cup last year and said to Sonya 'I'm done'," Cotter said.
"She had this massive grin on her face and said 'we've been waiting for you.'"
The trio will sign off from their duties with Port Macquarie Junior Touch Football Association following this year's NSW Junior State Cup next weekend.
They would never have left me holding the baby and I would never have left them; we came as one and we'll go as one.Min Cotter
After an involvement stretching almost a decade, they will hand over their roles knowing touch football in the Hastings couldn't be in better shape.
"They would never have left me holding the baby and I would never have left them; we came as one and we'll go as one," Cotter said.
An emphasis on the kids' enjoyment has been one of many highlights of their roles over the years.
"We make it about the kids; it's not about the committee or the parents," Mr Steep said.
While the growth of the sport over the last seven years has largely been due to their patience and sacrifices, they acknowledge there has been a significant amount of help along the way.
"The legacy we're hoping to have left is the growth of our competition," Cotter said.
"While the rep teams and State Cup are important, to us it's more about the kids on the park in our general competition in term four."
When they took over in 2012, the local competition had just under 40 teams; that number has now tripled.
"When we first started we had 37 teams and we finish this year with 127, so we have 1148 kids out here running around on a Tuesday and Thursday night," Cotter said.
"What we're also proud of is the number of kids who volunteer to ref and do the heavy lifting.
"We've just got great kids; there are 1148 kids out here and over the years we've probably only had three complaints."
But Cotter's health issues and the Steep's family commitments meant they couldn't put in as much work as they once had.
So the time came to walk away.
We can't give what we have and if we can't do that, we're not willing to do it.Min Cotter
"We can't give what we have and if we can't do that, we're not willing to do it," Cotter said.
"We don't want to drop the ball; we'd rather pass it on while it's in a great state."
After witnessing Anna Gleeson steer the association's under-10 girls to a history-making northern conference title win 12 months ago, what would be the ideal farewell?
"I'd like to see our under-18 boys and girls go really well because these kids have started since under-10s and have stuck every year with us," Steep said.
"They're the ones we started with so we'd really like to see them succeed."
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