Essendon Football Club
The Essendon Football Club, nicknamed the Bombers, is a professional Australian rules football club that plays in the Australian Football League, the sport's premier competition. Thought to have formed in 1872, the club played its first recorded game on 7 June 1873 against a Carlton Second 20, winning 1 goal to nil; the club played a senior club in the Victorian Football Association in 1878, one year after the VFA formed. It is associated with Essendon, a suburb in the north-west of Melbourne, Victoria. Since 2013, the club has been headquartered at The Hangar, Melbourne Airport, plays its home games at either Docklands Stadium or the Melbourne Cricket Ground. While it stopped playing games at the ground thereafter, Windy Hill remained its training and administration base until the end of 2013. Dyson Heppell is the current team captain. A founding member club of both the Victorian Football Association, in 1877, the Victorian Football League, in 1896, Essendon is one of Australia's best-known football clubs.
Essendon has won 16 VFL/AFL premierships, along with Carlton, is the most of any club in the competition. The club won four consecutive VFA premierships between 1891 and 1894, a feat unmatched in VFA/VFL history; the club was founded by members of the Royal Agricultural Society, the Melbourne Hunt Club and the Victorian Woolbrokers. The Essendon Football Club is thought to have formed in 1872 at a meeting it the home of a well-known brewery family, the McCrackens, whose Ascot Vale property hosted a team of local junior players. Robert McCracken, the owner of several city hotels, was the founder and first president of the Essendon Football club and his son, its first secretary. Alex became president of the newly formed VFL. Alex's cousin, Collier McCracken, who had played with Melbourne, was the team's first captain; the club played its first recorded match against the Carlton second twenty on 7 June 1873, with Essendon winning by one goal. Essendon played 13 matches in its first season, losing two.
The club was one of the inaugural junior members of the Victorian Football Association in 1877, began competing as a senior club from the 1878 season. During its early years in the Association, Essendon played its home matches at Flemington Hill, but moved to the East Melbourne Cricket Ground in 1881. In 1878, Essendon played in the first match on what would be considered by modern standards to be a full-sized field at Flemington Hill. In 1879 Essendon played Melbourne in one of the earliest night matches recorded when the ball was painted white. In 1883 the team played four matches in eight days in Adelaide: losing to Norwood, defeating Port Adelaide, a combined South Australian team, South Adelaide. In 1891 Essendon won their first VFA premiership, which they repeated in 1892, 1893 and 1894. One of the club's greatest players, Albert Thurgood played for the club during this period, making his debut in 1892. Essendon was undefeated in the 1893 season. At the end of the 1896 season Essendon along with seven other clubs formed the Victorian Football League.
Essendon's first VFL game was in 1897 was against Geelong at Corio Oval in Geelong. Essendon won its first VFL premiership by winning the 1897 VFL finals series. Essendon again won the premiership in 1901; the club won successive premierships in 1911 and 1912 over Collingwood and South Melbourne respectively. The club is recorded as having played at Glass' Paddock and Flemington Hill, it is that these are three different names for the one ground, given that McCracken's Paddock was a parcel of land that sat within the larger Glass's Paddock which in turn was situated in an area known at the time as Flemington Hill. In 1882 the club moved home games to the East Melbourne Cricket Ground, after an application to play on the Essendon Cricket Ground was voted down by Lord Mayor James Taylor on the basis that City of Essendon the mayor considered the Essendon Cricket Ground "to be suitable only for the gentleman's game of cricket",The club became known by the nickname "the Same Old Essendon", from the title and hook of the principal song performed by a band of supporters which occupied a section of the grandstand at the club's games.
The nickname first appeared in print in the local North Melbourne Advertiser in 1889, ended up gaining wide use as the diminutive "Same Olds". This move away from Essendon, at a time when fans would walk to their local ground, didn't go down too well with many Essendon people, it was known firstly as Essendon Town and, after 1905, as Essendon. After the 1921 season, the East Melbourne Cricket Ground was closed and demolished to expand the Flinders Street Railyard. Having played at the East Melbourne Cricket Ground from 1882 to 1921, having won four VFA premierships and four VFL premierships whilst there, Essendon was looking for a new home, was offered grounds at the current Royal Melbourne Showgrounds, at Victoria Park, at Arden St, North Melbourne, the Essendon Cricket Ground; the Essendon City Council offered the team the Essendon Cricket Ground, announcing that it would be pre
Australian rules football
Australian rules football known as Australian football, or called Aussie rules, football or footy, is a contact sport played between two teams of eighteen players on an oval-shaped field a modified cricket ground. Points are scored by kicking the oval-shaped ball between behind posts. During general play, players may position themselves anywhere on the field and use any part of their bodies to move the ball; the primary methods are kicking and running with the ball. There are rules on how the ball can be handled: for example, players running with the ball must intermittently bounce or touch it on the ground. Throwing the ball is not allowed and players must not get caught holding the ball. A distinctive feature of the game is the mark, where players anywhere on the field who catch the ball from a kick are awarded possession. Possession of the ball is in dispute at all times except when mark is paid. Players can use their whole body to obstruct opponents. Dangerous physical contact, interference when marking and deliberately slowing the play are discouraged with free kicks, distance penalties or suspension for a certain number of matches, depending on the seriousness of the infringement.
The game features frequent physical contests, spectacular marking, fast movement of both players and the ball and high scoring. The sport's origins can be traced to football matches played in Melbourne, Victoria in 1858, inspired by English public school football games. Seeking to develop a game more suited to adults and Australian conditions, the Melbourne Football Club published the first laws of Australian football in May 1859, making it the oldest of the world's major football codes. Australian football has the highest spectator attendance and television viewership of all sports in Australia, while the Australian Football League, the sport's only professional competition, is the nation's wealthiest sporting body; the AFL Grand Final, held annually at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, is the highest attended club championship event in the world. The sport is played at amateur level in many countries and in several variations, its rules are governed by the AFL Commission with the advice of the AFL's Laws of the Game Committee.
Australian rules football is known by several nicknames, including Aussie rules and footy. In some regions, it is marketed as AFL after the Australian Football League. There is evidence of football being played sporadically in the Australian colonies in the first half of the 19th century. Compared to cricket and horse racing, football was viewed as a minor "amusement" at the time, while little is known about these early one-off games, it is clear they share no causal link with Australian football. In 1858, in a move that would help to shape Australian football in its formative years, "public" schools in Melbourne, Victoria began organising football games inspired by precedents at English public schools; the earliest such match, held in St Kilda on 15 June, was between Melbourne Grammar and St Kilda Grammar. On 10 July 1858, the Melbourne-based Bell's Life in Victoria and Sporting Chronicle published a letter by Tom Wills, captain of the Victoria cricket team, calling for the formation of a "foot-ball club" with a "code of laws" to keep cricketers fit during winter.
Born in Australia, Wills played a nascent form of rugby football whilst a pupil at Rugby School in England, returned to his homeland a star athlete and cricketer. His letter is regarded by many historians as giving impetus for the development of a new code of football today known as Australian football. Two weeks Wills' friend, cricketer Jerry Bryant, posted an advertisement for a scratch match at the Richmond Paddock adjoining the Melbourne Cricket Ground; this was the first of several "kickabouts" held that year involving members of the Melbourne Cricket Club, including Wills, Bryant, W. J. Hammersley and J. B. Thompson. Trees were used as goalposts and play lasted an entire afternoon. Without an agreed upon code of laws, some players were guided by rules they had learned in the British Isles, "others by no rules at all". Another significant milestone in 1858 was a match played under experimental rules between Melbourne Grammar and Scotch College, held at the Richmond Paddock; this 40-a-side contest, umpired by Wills and Scotch College teacher John Macadam, began on 7 August and continued over two subsequent Saturdays, ending in a draw with each side kicking one goal.
It is commemorated with a statue outside the MCG, the two schools have competed annually since in the Cordner-Eggleston Cup, the world's oldest continuous football competition. Since the early 20th century, it has been suggested that Australian football was derived from the Irish sport of Gaelic football, not codified until 1885. There is no archival evidence in favour of a Gaelic influence, the style of play shared between the two modern codes was evident in Australia long before the Irish game evolved in a similar direction. Another theory, first proposed in 1983, posits that Wills, having grown up amongst Aborigines in Victoria, may have seen or played the Aboriginal game of Marn Grook, incorporated some of its features into early Australian football; the evidence for this is only circumstantial, according to biographer Greg de Moore's research, Wills was "almost influenced by his experience at Rugby School". A loosely organised Melbourne side, captained by Wills, played against other football enthusiasts in the winter and spring of 1858.
The following year, on 14 May, the Melbourne Football Club came into being, making it one of the
Maffra is a town in Victoria, Australia, 220 kilometres east of Melbourne. It is in the Shire of Wellington local government area, it relies on dairy farming and other agriculture, is the site of one of Murray-Goulburn Cooperative's eight processing plants in Victoria. Maffra is a detour off the Princes Highway and is near Sale, Newry, Tinamba and Rosedale. At the 2016 census, Maffra had a population of 4,316; the town began as an outstation of the region's first cattle run, named by pioneer grazier Lachlan Macalister after a village on the island of South Uist in the Outer Hebrides, Scotland. The town appears to have taken its name from a group of squatters from Maffra, a village in the Monaro region of NSW, with its location between current Maffra and Newry being written on an early map; the squatters moved on. The Monaro Maffra was connected to Mafra, a town in Portugal; the township was settled in the 1860s, the Post Office opening on 20 July 1864. Maffra railway station on the Maffra railway line opened in 1887.
The last regular passenger service ran in 1977. The station precinct is now an industrial precinct and the former station building is used for community purposes. Maffra was long the beef cattle capital of West Gippsland and, for many years, the only beet sugar processing centre in the country; the Beet Museum, set in the Port of Maffra Park, has relics from the defunct sugar beet industry. The building is a relocated historic weighbridge building, is lined with pine boards from the home of Charles and Grace Quirk, one of Maffra's first cottages. Maffra hosts a Mardi Gras every March, the Maffra and District Agricultural and Horticultural Show in October and a tennis tournament at Easter. Maffra is considered to have one of the prettiest main streets in Victoria; the Wellington Shire Council removed the 100+ year old trees that line it because of disease, but has since replaced them with young oaks. Maffra has the Maffra Primary School and St Mary's Primary School. Maffra has a public secondary school, Maffra Secondary College, which has a student enrolment of around 700.
Maffra Secondary has a strong academic program and is involved in a number of community service programs. The Gippsland Vehicle Collection Motor Museum is for lovers of old cars, it is housed in a huge old sugar beet building which the Car Club has given new life. In recent years Maffra has become a hub for backpackers seeking to complete Regional work requirements to achieve a second year visa. With growing salad and vegetable farming industries in the surrounding area it is considered a great town for working travelers. Maffra Lodge provides accommodation all year round to cater for backpackers. A local group is working at Bellbird Corner, restoring the area to the popular picnic area it was in the 1900s; the town has an Australian Rules football team competing in the Gippsland Football League. Maffra is home to a field hockey club, fielding junior, women's and men's teams in the East Gippsland Hockey Association playing at Cameron Sports Complex, Morison Street. At this complex, is Maffra's Amateur Basketball Association.
This hosts old teams, as well as Men and Women's CBL teams. Golfers play at the course of the Maffra Golf Club on Fulton Road. Bill Bennett, AFL Player, member of Carlton's 1968 premiership side with 16 premierships John Hipwell, Australian architect John Butcher, AFL Player with Port Adelaide Football Club Shane Watts former world champion off-road motorcycle racer Andrew'Fat Guts' Phelan self proclaimed'King of Maffra', jack of all trades. Full time "accountant" - part time Uber driver. Famous sayings "Ill be your boss on day Mag" Media related to Maffra, Victoria at Wikimedia Commons
Australian Football League
The Australian Football League is the pre-eminent professional competition of Australian rules football. Through the AFL Commission, the AFL serves as the sport's governing body, is responsible for controlling the laws of the game; the league was founded as the Victorian Football League as a breakaway from the previous Victorian Football Association, with its inaugural season commencing in 1897. Comprising only teams based in the Australian state of Victoria, the competition's name was changed to the Australian Football League for the 1990 season, after expanding to other states throughout the 1980s; the league consists of 18 teams spread over five of Australia's six states. Matches have been played in all states and mainland territories of Australia, as well as in New Zealand and China to promote the sport abroad; the AFL season consists of a pre-season competition, followed by a 23-round regular season, which runs during the Australian winter. The team with the best record after the home-and-away series is awarded the "minor premiership."
The top eight teams play off in a four-round finals series, culminating in the AFL Grand Final, held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground each year. The grand final winner is termed the "premiers", is awarded the premiership cup; the current premiers are the West Coast Eagles. The Victorian Football Association was established in 1877 and went on to become Victoria's major Australian rules football competition. During the 1890s, an off-field power struggle occurred between the VFA's stronger and weaker clubs, the former seeking greater administrative control commensurate with their relative financial contribution to the game; this came to a head in 1896 when it was proposed that gate profits, which were always lower in matches involving the weaker clubs, be shared amongst all teams in the VFA. After it was intimated that the proposal would be put to a vote, six of the strongest clubs—Collingwood, Fitzroy, Geelong and South Melbourne—seceded from the VFA, invited Carlton and St Kilda to join them in founding a new competition, the Victorian Football League.
The remaining VFA clubs—Footscray, North Melbourne, Port Melbourne and Williamstown—were given the opportunity to compete as a junior sides at a level beneath the VFL, but rejected the offer and remained for the 1897 VFA season. The VFL's inaugural season occurred in 1897, it made several innovations early on to entice the public's interest, including an annual finals tournament, rather than awarding the premiership to the team with the best record through the season. Although the VFL and the VFA continued to compete for spectator interest for many years, the VFL established itself as the premier competition in Victoria. In 1908, the league expanded to ten teams, with Richmond crossing from the VFA and University Football Club from the Metropolitan Football Association. University, after three promising seasons, finished last each year from 1911 until 1914, including losing 51 matches in a row; as a result, the club withdrew from the VFL at the end of 1914. Beginning sporadically during the late 1890s and from 1907 until World War I, the VFL premier and the premier of the South Australian Football League met in a playoff match for the Championship of Australia.
South Australia's Port Adelaide was the most successful club of the competition winning three titles during the period along with an earlier victory. In 1925, the VFL expanded from nine teams to twelve, with Footscray and North Melbourne each crossing from the VFA. North Melbourne and Hawthorn remained weak in the VFL for a long period. Although North Melbourne would become the first of the 1925 expansion sides to reach a Grand Final in 1950 it was Footscray that adapted to the VFL with the most ease of the three clubs, by 1928 were well off the bottom of the ladder. Between the years of 1927 and 1930, Collingwood became the first, only VFL team, to win four successive Premierships. In 1952, the VFL hosted ` National Day'. Matches were played at the Sydney Cricket Ground, Brisbane Exhibition Ground, North Hobart Oval, Albury Sports Ground and Victorian country towns Yallourn and Euroa. Footscray became the first of the 1925 expansion teams to win the premiership in 1954. Melbourne became a powerhouse during the 1950s and early 1960s under coach Norm Smith and star player Ron Barassi.
The club contested seven consecutive grand finals from 1954 to 1960, winning five premierships, including three in a row from 1955 to 1957. Television coverage began with direct telecasts of the final quarter permitted. At first, several channels competed through broadcasting different games. However, when the VFL found that television was reducing crowds, it decided that no coverage was to be allowed for 1960. In 1961, replays were introduced although direct telecasts were permitted in Melbourne. In 1959, the VFL planned the first purpose built mega-stadium, VFL Park, to give it some independence from the Melbourne Crick
Northern Blues Football Club is a long-established Australian rules football club based in Preston and playing in the Victorian Football League representing the central and outer areas of Melbourne. The Northern Blues are affiliated with the Carlton Blues in the AFL, play their home games at the Preston City Oval and Ikon Park; the club was established in 1882 as the Preston Football Club. The club participated in the VFA between 1903 and 1912, since 1926. After World War II, the club was known as the Bullants, wore a plain red guernsey with a white monogram; the club became the Northern Bullants. Ahead of the 2012 season, the club adopted the colours and nickname of its AFL-affiliate. In 2013 the third open age team affiliated with the Victorian Amateur Football Association began and in 2016 reverted to the name Preston Bullants; the club was formed in 1882 but little is known of its first three years before the Shire of Jika Jika changed its name in September 1885 to Preston. Preston and another local club, Gowerville merged and competed at lower levels of the Victorian Junior Football Association.
After a battle with the Council, the club was granted permission in 1887 to play on Preston Park where it had remained with the exception of one year when it played at Coburg to allow the ground to be widened. From 1890, the club played in the First Rate Division of the V. J. F. A. and despite being its remote location compared to the other clubs, was the only one of the 28 teams of 1890 to survive the decade despite finishing last or second last in five consecutive seasons. By the late 1890s the district was starting to grow and the struggling club gathered depth and strength and took out the first of three consecutive First-Rate premierships in 1900, defeating Collingwood Juniors before 5,000 people at the Brunswick Street Oval. Further premierships followed in 1901 and 1902, no finals being played as Preston finished the requisite two games clear of their nearest rivals to claim the title. With the VFA keen to expand their number of clubs, Preston were a logical choice to join the senior body in 1903, changing from a blue jumper with yellow sash to a plain maroon jumper with navy blue knicks.
Despite a reasonable opening season where they won six games, the club struggled to find players and finished last in 1904 in the middle of what was to be a 27-game losing streak. Several other bottom-of-the list results came before a brief resurgence in 1909 under former Collingwood champion Charlie Pannam, but with the loss of several key players to League clubs, Preston again went on a downward spiral and won just one game through 1910 and 1911. With Northcote joining the Association in 1908, pressure was applied for the two clubs to merge and the VFA forced the issue early in 1912. Preston officials encouraged their players to move, but diverted all the clubs trophies and assets to the junior Preston Districts club that had acted as their Seconds and the Northcote-Preston entity has never been recognised in Association records. Preston were promoted before their time: by 1912, the district numbered just 4,800 people spread over 8,800 acres. Of the other suburbs represented in the VFA, the next smallest was Brighton with 11,000.
Preston's leading player during early VFA days was Sid Hall, a centre half-back regarded as the best high mark in the competition. Despite the lack of success, Preston managed to supply some fine players to League ranks in Percy Ogden, Hedley Tompkins and Bill Hendrie, Hugh James, Joe Prince, George Doull and Eric Woods. Preston's place was taken by Melbourne City who didn't win a game in the two years before they folded; the nucleus of the Preston club returned to the First-Rate Division of the Victorian Junior Football Association. Ogden returned to captain-coach the club in 1916 and 1917 while Essendon were in recess for the First World War and by 1919 Preston re-established as one of the top teams in junior football. Young George Gough was recruited by Fitzroy as a rover. Premierships came in 1921 and again in 1923, under the coaching of William "Bull" Adams, refused a clearance to Fitzroy by his West Australian club, overrunning Yarraville in the final term despite playing one man short.
With the loss of North Melbourne and Hawthorn to the League in 1925, the Association accepted Preston and Camberwell into their ranks for the 1926 season. The team used their uniform from junior days, a broad red stripe down the chest and back and with white sides and sleeves; this time the club was ready for senior ranks, raising a few eyebrows when they won nine of the 18 games in their first season as well as supplying the Recorder Cup winner, William "Bluey" Summers. A finals appearance came the following year, Preston's first senior final finished in a draw with Brighton, who won the replay held a fortnight later; the club remained in the middle ranking of the Association up until the cessation of play during the Second World War, the highlight being a remarkable 1931 season under the legendary Roy Cazaly who sacked half the side mid-season and promoted youngsters. Needing to win 12 games straight to ensure a finals spot, Preston managed to sneak in with 11 wins and a draw, but were bundled out in the Preliminary Final after several injuries.
Despite the modest finals record, the club provided the 1934 and 1936 Recorder Cup winners in Danny Warr and Bert Hyde respectively. Leading players up to World War 2 included Summers, Warr, "Bert" Smith, Frankie "