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The Association Recorder - Sat 15th Sept, 1956.

Yep, the heading is correct. I spent a week in Melbourne as my folks were down to celebrate their 50th Wedding Anniversary, and came across a copy of the VFA Recorder from the 2nd Semi-Final of the 1956 season. Needless to say, the copy I have is very brown, and extremely fragile.

This game was between Port Melbourne and Williamstown, but I will endeavour to revise what I have as best as I can.

So, starting from the front, we have an ad for Garland's Famous Veterinary Mixtures, on behalf of Studley Trading Co. Pty. Ltd., 54 William St, Melbourne, MB 5355.

Beneath that, there is the title of the publication - The Official Organ of the VFA 6d. - with another ad below that, from Prahran Car Radio Centre promoting the 'new' A.W.A. car radio (from as little as 3 pound).

Over the page there is a full page ad for The Sun (You'll score every time when you get your football facts from the picture-packed pages of in a banner The Sun).

Page 3 sees all the contact details - Address Communications to "The Association Football Recorder", 1 Collins Place, Melbourne, C.1. Telephone MF 4311.

Next shows it is Vol. XXXVI, No. 21.

This written piece follows:

TIED HAND AND FOOT
AWARD WINNER SPEAKS OUT
by "Midfield"

Congratulations to Johnny Martin, Williamstown's centre-man, for an outstanding performance in scooping the pool of awards this season. Best and Fairest V.F.A. award, plus the 'Herald' and "Sporting Globe" awards completed a grand year for the 23 year old seasider. Martin is the type of player his club and the V.F.A. can feel proud to count as their own. Johnny Martin made some pertinent remarks when interviewed by a newspaper reporter. In fact, he said what a lot of us have been thinking and is to be commended for his forthright attitude towards the future of the V.F.A.

He suggested the time was opportune for the V.F.A. to breal away from the A.N.F.C. and bring back the throw-pass.

The throw-pass attracted the crowds in the past, and would do so again. The Association would be free to attract better players and induce League players to cross to the V.F.A.

There are many of us who will agree with Martin. There are some who would make the move immediately, but it is not a move that should be made without a great deal of thought.

My personal view is that the A.N.F.C. is doing a great deal for the game throughout Australia. I am sure the majority of A.N.F.C. members are real lovers of football and therefore think kindly of the V.F.A.

Unfortunately the V.F.L. does not take kindly to any form of control from another quarter even if the future of the game is at stake and it exercises an overwhelming influence in this State.

While the V.F.A. is a member of the A.N.F.C., it's hands are tied and the decision to break-away must be faced.

The only advantage to staying in the A.N.F.C. appears to be the liberty of fielding a team in the Carnival games each year they are held. To me the break-away faction have more to offer.

Freedom to do as we please. Freedom to attract big name players from the League ranks. New rules to bring the game up to date.

The V.F.A. has had many ups and downs and possess an amazing skill to fight back when many are prepared to write it off as a complete loss. We are not doing as well as we should and bold efforts are necessary to regain the pioneer spirit.

I have amplified Johnny Martin's thoughts and I hope all V.F.A. supporters will carefully consider what he has said.

I liked the way Martin finished his interview with the reporter.

He said "The standard of Association football is a lot better than most people think."

I liked it because that is what many of us have been saying for years and coming from a player may be it will carry more weight.

More to come

billythekid

"Midfield" and "The Statistician" were written by Fred Hill who was Sec of the VFA for many years.

The VFA offices were in the VCA building on Flinders Street this was before the VFA bought the East Melbourne property and as a young VFA supporter(Sandy)I visited Fred a couple of times and he was very interesting to talk to and had a wealth of knowlege about the VFA and its history.He used to work most of the time on his own and had a helper in the preseason permit time.Im pretty certain that he did most of the work on the Recorder as well.Talk about running a shoe string outfit!

Todays bludgers at the VFL wouldnt hold a candle to those guys for passion and work ethic.

He and Pres Gillon were the two that pushed for the breaking of the permit agreement with the VFL (VFA clubs could take players from the VFL without a clearence) ,brought in Sunday footy, live TV and 16 a side in the early 1960s that led to the golden era of the VFA over the next 30 years.

vfa
vfa's picture

Probably a bit before my time Billy as I was not yet on this earth.
Billy as you are a longtime vfa follower which era do you reckon was the VFA's best ?

Also if you had to pick some of the VFA premiers that would be more than a match up with the VFL premiers, who would you pick ?

For me since following the VFA since the late 60s, i would rate the best era from 1975 to about 1982.
If I would pick which VFA premiers would be more of a match up with the VFL premiers I would say any of Port's premiership teams in 74/76/77/80/81/82. Geelong West were pretty good as well in 1975. The VFA premiers of those years would have given the VFL premiers a decent game. Hypothetical to say what the result would have been but the VFA premiers for those years would have given the League premiers a decent game.
I have seen a bit of footage from Moorabbin's 63 flag and I would say they would have given Geelong a very good run. Max Papley was a superstar and Lindsay Fox was a hard man.

vfa
vfa's picture

Great work Dale,

keep them coming. I have a few old VFA recorders at home and they make fascinating reading.

vfa
vfa's picture

Unfortunately George Stone has passed away very recently.
The great man Norman Yemm better known as Jim Patterson in the legendary Homicide series is listed on the bench in the second semi for Port in the 1956 semi final. Norm Yemm was also a regular in the Dandy Dollar Dash.
Some great names in the teams above Dale.
Bob Bonnett and Frank Johnson for Port.
The Monster Gerry Callahan and Ray Smith for the seagulls. Plenty of other stars for both teams.

Wally from Will...
Wally from Williamstown's picture

Johnny Martin is the father-in-law of former Port Adelaide coach Mark Williams & still lives in Victoria St Willi as far as I am aware. A few of the Willi blokes have passed away, but i still see Syd Wookey around the town and Lindsay Murphy still attends games occassionally.

blackrocker
blackrocker's picture

I would have attended that game;from memory Port won. Willy went on to win the Preliminary and won their third successive GF.

billythekid

[quote=vfa]Probably a bit before my time Billy as I was not yet on this earth.
Billy as you are a longtime vfa follower which era do you reckon was the VFA's best ?

Also if you had to pick some of the VFA premiers that would be more than a match up with the VFL premiers, who would you pick ?

For me since following the VFA since the late 60s, i would rate the best era from 1975 to about 1982.
If I would pick which VFA premiers would be more of a match up with the VFL premiers I would say any of Port's premiership teams in 74/76/77/80/81/82. Geelong West were pretty good as well in 1975. The VFA premiers of those years would have given the VFL premiers a decent game. Hypothetical to say what the result would have been but the VFA premiers for those years would have given the League premiers a decent game.
I have seen a bit of footage from Moorabbin's 63 flag and I would say they would have given Geelong a very good run. Max Papley was a superstar and Lindsay Fox was a hard man.[/quote]

Ive always been realistic enough to think that no VFA premier would get even close to the VFL premiers of the day

My favorite VFA flag winners (apart from Sandy that is)Willy in their golden era in the 1950s Ports great run in the 1970s/early 80s 1972 Oakleigh 1973 Prahran and 1975 Geelong West I think the late 1960s to the mid 1980s were the golden era of VFA footy with the 1970s being the pick of the crop.

billythekid

[quote=Dale61]I'll post more as I get the time (and inclination) as it all has to be rewritten due to me no longer having a scanner.

This particular issue has a great deal of info, including profiles of the players playing in the game that day. All up, there is some 32 pages that will, in some form, get a mention of some sort here in due course.

For those interested, here's how the teams were named for the Second Semi-Final of the 1956 season.

PM:
B: #26-Bob Atkinson ~ #12-Jack Metherall ~ #15-George Stone
HB: #2-Eric Wharton ~ #4-Jim Wilson ~ #32-Ron Young
C: #27-Ern Atkinson ~ #10-Bob Withers ~ #19-Bern Laffey
HF: #17-Bill Harvey ~ #28-Reg Lewis ~ #22-Tom Allen
F: #24-Brian Kerr ~ #20-Bob Bonnett ~ #21-Neil Collins
R: #11-Frank Johnson ~ #14-Ted Sykes ~ #16-Bern Miller
19th: #7-Wally Lockhart
20th: #25-Ken McDonald
Emer: #34-Ray Landorff ~ #9-Bill Mitchell ~ #37-Norm Yemm

Williamstown:
B: #6-John Ramsay ~ #11-Max Munday ~ #5-Alby Outen
HB: #22-Jack Curran ~ #3-Len Kent ~ #29-Eric Beitzel
C: #25-Frank Sims ~ #8-John Martin ~ #14-Reg Ogden
HF: #10-Reg Fisher ~ #23-Ken Reed ~ #24-Ray Smith
F: #15-Maurice Gear ~ #4-Alan McPherson ~ #20-Syd Wookey
R: #18-Bob Jones ~ #1-Gerry Callahan ~ #2-Alby Linton
19th: #17-Alan Laurie
20th: #26-Jack Evans
Emer: #31-Lindsay Murphy ~ #30-John McTaggart[/quote]

Ive always thought that Bob Withers was the most talented and hardest footballer that Port produced in that era .He left Port at an early age to coach in Tassie where he became a star player along with another great VFA player John Coughlan from Oakleigh who also was coaching in the Apple Isle.

vfa
vfa's picture

Billy, what was Norm Yemm like as a player ?
I don't think he played too many senior games for Port.
Great actor and good athlete (runner).
Homicide, Sullivan's and many other gigs.
Plus as a runner the legendary DANDY DOLLAR DASH.

billythekid

[quote=vfa]Billy, what was Norm Yemm like as a player ?
I don't think he played too many senior games for Port.
Great actor and good athlete (runner).
Homicide, Sullivan's and many other gigs.
Plus as a runner the legendary DANDY DOLLAR DASH.[/quote]

I dont really remember him apart from his running career.I think he was more of a fringe player in the powerfull Port sides of the 1950s