Rovers 50 years in Port Hedland

This weekend Port Hedland Rovers celebrate 50 years of footy in Port Hedland with a match against Swans at the Colin Matheson Oval on Friday night, and a Gala Dinner on Saturday night.

Former coaches and players of Rovers will travel to Port Hedland for the weekend’s events and stay at The Esplanade Hotel, the original home of Rovers.

Congratulations Rovers on 50 years of football in Port Hedland.

Rovers were originally formed at the historic Port Hedland Esplanade Hotel in the early sixties when Port Hedland was a sleepy little export town with around 1,500 residents.

In January 1962, a new postal officer arrived in town arrived with his new bride Cecily. It was none other than Colin Peter Matheson. He was fanatical football follower and umpire from Perth. His favourite team was West Perth Falcons and collected football records from every game. Within a few months Colin organised football games between two rival pubs, The Esplanade and the Pier Hotel. Colin also managed to entice the local Catholic priest Father Middleton to play a game or two in return for some help at St Cecilia’s church.

In 1967, Colin formed the Port Hedland Football Association between three clubs:

1. Rovers (The Esplanade Hotel)
2. Towns (The Pier Hotel)
3. Finucane Island

It was pretty tough playing football in Port Hedland. Colin marked out the oval and goal square with white paint on the flood plain just near Anderson Street. There was no lawn or ground cover. The other oval was at Finucane Island. Its playing surface was not much better.

Before a game the competing teams would do an “emu march” across the ground picking up rocks and sticks, anything which might cause a deeper injury than just gravel rash!

Click here to read on… Rovers 50 years

 

 

 

Advertisements

2017 Rovers Reunion 1970s

Legends of the 1970s De Grey Football Association from Rovers attended a reunion organised by one of the Association’s most successful coaches John Green.

Some stories told on the day…

Bruce Hurrell:  PAT LOVE had a cherished tracksuit originally given to him by Mal Brown.  Lovey was coming back from a Karratha footy match.  It was tradition to stop and light a fire to break up the journey.  The group had lit a fire but had run out of wood.  So Lovey in his favourite track suit climbed up the tree they were under to break off a branch.  He lost his balance and fell into the fire embers.  The track suit was made of nylon and singed with lots of holes.  Lucky they had beer to put Lovey out.

Phil Lockyer: COLIN MATHESON was invited for post match drinks at Greeny’s place.  Col said he wouldn’t be able to make it because he had the movies to run at the Port Hedland Drive Ins.  Anyway, everyone was surprised to see Col arrive at 9.30pm well before the movies finished at the usual 11pm.  Greeny said what are you doing here? Col said its was one of those old cowboy movies with three reels.  I played the first and last reel and left out the middle one.  No one even noticed so here I am!

GREG BROWNE:  Rumour had it in that there was going to be something going down in the grand final.  So before the siren I was sent down to the backline to watch for any foul play.  Just as the siren went and the whistle blew I was king hit from behind.  I got up and said if that’s all you got, you have better have eyes in the back of your head.  We lost the match.

JOHN GREEN:  Colin Matheson was a great President but sometimes fudged the rules to even up the competition.  One day they went down to the oval to help Col mark it out.  When they arrived the job was already done.  Col said he had done it and left for the day.  John checked the markings and noticed something odd.  It was marked out the shape of Goldsworthy’s oval.  So the boys went home, got their lawnmowers and mowed out the oval lines, then repainted them to suit Port Hedland’s oval conditions to give the home team the advantage!  Sounds like cricket.

Well done to everyone involved.  Here’s a few snap shots to help you remember….

1973 DGFA Life Member

The De Grey Football Association has made Mr Harry Newman a Life Member of the Association.

Mr Newman has been Secretary/Treasurer of the Goldsworthy Football Club for the past three year, and coached the Club in 1969.

He won the Association’s Fairest and Best medal in 1971 and was Fairest and Best for his Club.

The President of the De Grey Football Association Mr Matheson said today Mr Newman was leaving the district soon and his Life Membership was in appreciation for what he had contributed to football in the area.

Harry Newman life member 1973