IAN Chappell rattled the pickets when he said Australia didn't need a cricket coach.
That set the seagulls among the cricket pitches.
Bob Simpson was the Australian coach at the time.
Under him, the national team went from its lowest standing to the start of its most prolonged period of international dominance.
He was succeeded by Geoff Marsh and John Buchanan.
It's a moot point whether successive teams that contained the likes of Taylor, Slater, Hayden, Langer, the Waughs, Ponting, Gilchrist, McGrath, Warne, Lee and on, would have dominated with or without a coach.
Regardless, from Tests to first grade, coaches are now regarded as indispensable.
Not a Packer revolution; a quiet revolution.
It's a condition of entry that every Sydney grade club must have a level-two coach.
Blacktown has now got Greg Small, and the Warriors are already saying "classic catch".
Ask Small if he is aware of Chappell's comment, and he says "yes".
Ask if he considers himself a career coach and it's "yes".
He's 46 and wasn't a bad cricketer — NSW under-16s, first-grader but no world beater.
In this, cricket is following rugby league, where once the best players were expected to become coaches.
A Craig Bellamy or Michael Maguire or Shane Flanagan are the modern archetype — solid playing backgrounds but no worldbeaters.
Cricket is moving the same way; the theme is the same but not the remuneration.
"It pays the tolls and petrol," said Eastern Suburbs commuter Small of the Blacktown job.
Small's doing it for love; he could be earning a lot more money elsewhere.
He's come from Northern Suburbs and then Eastern Suburbs - who won last season's first-grade premiership, and Blacktown are glad he has.
The Warriors have started the season with two first-innings wins from two.
Ask Small about his coaching approach, and the same word recurs. Structure.
"You've got to get the best out of a player," he said.
"Look at Mickey Arthur (the former South African and now Australian coach).
"He's so well respected, he knows how to get the best out of players. He's a winner, he's got a lot of presence. I've got to teach Blacktown how to win again."
So far, so winning.
But Small said at Easts, he had representative players like Brad Haddin, Peter Neville and Dave Warner. The Warriors have New Zealand Test opener Tim McIntosh until October 28 and former West Indian Test fast bowler Corey Collymore will arrive for his third stint in November, but Blacktown are hardly top and bottom-heavy with experienced rep players.
Been there, tried that, didn't work.
"I've got a lot of players, 18-19," Small said.
"I've got to give them the motivation and desire and structure.
"We can't be daunted.
"The district is a wonderful nursery but the talent hasn't been nurtured."
The Warriors are fielding five grade and a Metropolitan Cup team. That's 66 players.
"That's really unheard of," he said, adding success wouldn't be measured by the win-loss ratio but by the players' development.
"We've got a three to five year plan. We're getting 60-70 players to training.
Early days, but so far Small has made true believers of them.