Sunday, January 23, 2022

Tassie Football half a century ago, in 1972

Photo:  John Margaritis (right), the former Greece international player, coached Olympia in 1972 before moving on to South Melbourme Hellas.  He had the highest coaching qualifications, which he obtained in England.  He is shown here with Ken Morton during a visit to Tasmania by South Melbourne Hellas, who played Olympia at KGV Park  (before the administration building had been erected). [PlessPix] 

With the 2022 season almost upon us, I thought it may be interesting to have a look at what was happening in Tasmanian football 50 years ago.

Half a century ago is a long time, so let’s look at what was going in in 1972.

There were money problems at the Tasmanian Soccer Association and there was a proposal to cut referee fees by 25 per cent.

Referees were being paid $6 a game in the Cambridge League, which was the southern top-flight competition, and linesmen were paid $3 each.

The Cambridge League comprised 10 teams so the weekly cost for referees for the five games was $60.

Loss of income was attributed in part to poor allocation of games.  It was felt that the top games should be played at South Hobart to increase the TSA’s revenue, while less appealing games could be played at Grove Road in Glenorchy.

The referees would have none of it and to placate the TSA the referees’ association donated $108 to the TSA, which resolved the issue.

There was also a move to reduce the Cambridge League from 10 teams to 6, but none of the clubs would have a bar of this and the idea was shelved.

The 10 southern teams in the Cambridge League were:  Juventus, Olympia, Croatia-Glenorchy, Rapid, White Eagles, Northern Suburbs Caledonians, Dnipro, South Hobart, University and Metro.

There were many coaching changes for the 1972 season.

John Kirkpatrick moved from South Hobart to take over at Croatia-Glenorchy, while Barry Shacklady was the new coach in charge of Dnipro.

Karl Schwesinger was the new supremo at South Hobart, while John Grimsey was coach at Metro.

Duncan Summers was coach of Juventus and Ken Baker of White Eagles.

Bill Patterson coached Northern Suburbs Caledonians.

Rapid’s coach was the Dane, Kurt Lundin.  It later transpired that his real name was Kurt Olsen and the story was that he’d jumped ship in Adelaide.  As Kurt Olsen, he became a recognised artist and painter in Hobart in later years.

Then, just as now, young players were ken to seek their fortune on the Mainland.

Metro’s Robin Mills (18) tried his luck in Sydney with St George Budapest and Marconi but returned to Tasmania.

Dnipro goalkeeper Michael Gaff had trials in Sydney, as did Juventus’s John Genovesi, with Marconi.

Genovesi returned to Tasmania to complete his apprenticeship and to have a rest.  He said training with Marconi was four times as hard as with Juventus.

One of Genovesi’s team-mates at Juventus, Eric Owen, had just returned from a period in the UK but broke his pelvis just 30 seconds into his first game of the season for Juventus against South Hobart at Grove Road.

Vic Tuting threatened to resign as president and chairman of the Tasmanian Soccer Association at the age of 67.  He was also president and chairman of the Tasmanian Soccer Football Council and vice=president of the Australian Soccer Federation.

He ended up changing his mind and continuing in the roles.

Photo:  The late Karl Schwesinger, who was Tasmanian coach in 1972, player-coach of South Hobart, and the winner of the Rothmans Gold Medal that year. [PlessPix]  

Karl Schwesinger, 31, player-coach of South Hobart, won the 1972 Rothmans Gold Medal, worth $500 and awarded to Southern Tasmania’s best and fairest players as voted by the referees.  He had coached Juventus to the title the previous season, when the Rothmans Gold Medal ws first instituted and it was won in that inaugural year by another South Hobart player-coach, John Kirkpatrick.

There was no State League in 1972 and to try and redress the imbalance in State soccer, a State-wide Ampol Cup competition was formed.  It involved all the teams in the top-flight southern and northern competitions.

Olympia won the Ampol Cup that year by beating Launceston United in the final.

A junior ‘jugglethon’ was a conducted for youngsters throughout the State in 1972.  It involved juggling the ball in the air for as long as possible without it hitting the ground.

Andreas Fuerst from Cosgrove High School proved to be the best juggler in State under-14 section.  He juggled the ball an amazing 1,125 times.

There were senior representative matches, too, in 1972.

Karl Schwesinger was Tasmania’s coach for the game against Coburg on 7 October 1972 at Grove Road.

The Tasmanian squad was:

B Cengia (Juventus), W Stuetzel (Rapid), D Poulter (Metro), M Richards (Olympia), J Genovesi (Juventus), M Lakoseljac (Croatia-Glenorchy), G Sarfalvy (Croatia-Glenorchy), L Hodge (Ravenswood Olympic), M Brown (George Town), C Baird (Devonport), T McKenna (Devonport).

Reserves: F Letec (Croatia-Glenorchy), M Gaff (Dnipro), H Robertson (Olympia), H Streit (Northern Juventus), K Leung (Croatia-Glenorchy), J McCormick (St Leonard’s Rovers).

Tasmania won 6-2 after leading 3-0 at half-time.  Streit 3, MacKenna, Sarfalvy and Lakoseljac were Tasmania’s scorers, while Coburg replied through Loughran and Smith.

Northern Suburbs Caledonians took on a team from the visiting Royal Australian Navy destroyer HMAS Duchess and won 10-1.  Caledonians’ scorers were B Siggins 4, G Arnott 3, Baker 2 and Fraser, while a sailor by the name of Sernig replied for the ship.

Photo:  HMAS DUCHESS in Hobart. [Photo by Kingsley Barr]  

Miss Soccer was 17-year-old Miss White Eagles, Susan Rozmaryniewicz.  She was a student at Hobart Matric College and she was crowned by the Tasmanian Premier, Eric Reece.

Uring the season, Metro and White Eagles both claimed they were offered bribes to throw games, but nothing ever came of the accusations.

State coach Karl Schwesinger said at the end of the season he would be leaving South Hobart to coach White Eagles in 1973.  Alan Mackie was appointed as South Hobart coach for 1973.

Illawarra District Soccer Association from New South Wales visited Tasmania and beat Southern Tasmania 2-0, the goals coming from a penalty by McLeod and another goal by Kerr.

Barry Shacklady left as coach of Dnipro at the end of the season to coach Metro in 1973.  He had joined Olympia from Metro in 1962 and played for Tasmania against Chelsea and South Australia.

The Mercury’s best Southern Tasmania player rankings for 1972 were:  1.  Dudley Hall (Croatia-Glenorchy), 2.  Billy Jones (Juventus), 3.  J Genovesi (Juventus), 4.  Hugh Robertson (Olympia), 5.  Phil Owen (Juventus), 6.  Mike Richards (Olympia), 7.  Eric Owen (Juventus), 8.  George Sarfalvy (Croatia-Glenorchy), 9.  Brian McKay (Olympia), 10.  Joe Allan (Metro).

Johnny Genovesi won the best and fairest award for Juventus, who were the State Premiers.

Metro coach John Grimsey announced he would coach Olympia in 1973 and take over from John Margaritis, a Greek international.  Margaritis, one of Australia’s best coaches, was leaving Olympia and going to England to complete the coaching qualifications he had started two years previously.

English import Bill Jones was announced as the new Juventus coach for 1973 to replace Duncan Summers.  Juventus also announced that they were to remain a professional club that paid its players.

Croatia-Glenorchy advertised that they would play Melbourne Croatia at the end of the season in a friendly at Berriedale (the ground was where the bowling club is now, near MONA.

The 1972 winners Southern winners were:

State Premiers:  Juventus

Cambridge League (Southern Top Flight):  Juventus

Ampol Cup:  Olympia (beat Launceston United in this new State-wide competition)

Association Cup:  Juventus

Lloyd Triestino Cup:  Croatia-Glenorchy

The squads of 1972 were:

Metro:  Howlin, Cook, Stewart, Tria, Rae, W Peters, Allan, Poulter, Gibson, Adamczyk, Collins, Reid, Davis.

Rapid:  Marquardt, McKewing, Gerven, John Dilba, Jack Dilba, Wolfgang Stuetzel, Stefan Stuetzel, Todorovic, Fischer, Pless, J Stee, Cislo, Dymond, Wright, Lustic, Matthias, Fuchs.

Olympia:  Heazlett, Lynas, G Vail, R Vail, Hargrave, Robertson, Wright, Hawes, McKay, Norman, Stanton, Manis, Reid, Abberley.

Northern Suburbs Caledonians:  Jones, Fraser, Wallner, Noor, Mackinnon, Wilson, Arnott, B Siggins, Spendiff, Young, Godfery, Hindmarsh, Fraser.

South Hobart:  Barker, Webb, Crawford, Schwesinger, Mackie, Patterson, Jones, Martelli, Carrick, Coles, E Rawlings, Stephens, Aiken.

Croatia-Glenorchy:  Puclin, Payne, Cahut, Thornhill, Plazonic, Kirkpatrick, Hall, Lakoseljac, Buckingham, Letec, Curckovsky, Prodan, Milic.

Juventus:  Cengia, Toro, Watson, Duthie, Falzon, Hanna, P Wood, Meale, West, B Woods, P Owen, E Owen, Longo, Rizzolo, Mione.

University:  Moase, Swain, Sumner, Atkinson, N Sugden, C Sugden, Joughin, Taylor, Pidd, Butler, Enright, Willink.

Dnipro:  P Lagerewski, W Lagerewski, L Lagerewski, Harvey, Zapatocki, O’Brien, Howell, Herweynen, Chadwick, Dienno, Rafferty, Shacklady

White Eagles:  D Siggins, Hoyle, Goss, Davis, Biggar, Stewart, Stoddart, Baker, Prodanovic, Osuchowski, Rakowski, Harabash, Rayner, McKenna.

As for junior Tasmanian representative squads, here are some.  Some of the names are still associated with football today.

State Under-20s:  Michael Gaff, Chris Jones, Andy Collins (capt), Chris Howell, Wayne Goninon, Dave McKean, Larry Nunn, Rodney Cole, Walter Lagerewski, Tony Stewart, Greg Joughin (Reserves:  Tony Adamcyzk, Joe Martelli, Eneio Longo, Paul Davey, Ross Webb)

State Under-14s:  Peter Griffin, Russell Coleman, Joe Pavic, Michael Bygraves, Martin Thornhill, Stephen Pitchford, Dominc Fraraccio, Roland Lietz, Robert Rybak, Clifford Morgan, Bill Kirkpatrick (South), William Buchanan, Chris Dockray, Tomothy Beaumont (North-West), Conrad Hughes, Braden Carter (North).

Photo:  Tasmania's Under-13s representative side in 1972.  

State Under-13s:  Leon Dolliver (Taroona), Steven Huddlestone (Clarence), Peter Crowther (The Friends School), Michael McCullum (Geilston Bay), Christopher Baker (New Town High), Andrew Smith (Claremont High), Stephen Kannegiesser (Savio), Andrew Wilcock (Warrane), Robert Mione (St Virgils), Paul Marlor (The Friends School), Kevin Clamp (Claremont High), Christian Turner (Claremont High), Graham Mitchell (Taroona High), Victor Huddlestone (Clarence), Mathew Eastman (Clarence), Richard Ward (The Friends School).  The coach was Jack Smith and the manager was Rodger Marlor.


Monday, January 17, 2022

Vale Vehbija (Vebbie) Cahut (3 May 1943 - 15 January 2022)

Photo:  Vehbija Cahut (extreme left in back row) in the Croatia Glenorchy side of 1964, in a photo taken at Grove Road. 

The death has occurred in Hobart of former Croatia-Glenorchy defender, Vehbija Cahut.

Vebbie, as he was known, was aged 78 and had been ill for some time.

He played as a fullback in the Croatia team of the 1960s and was renowned for his power and stamina.

He was solidly built and guaranteed to present an imposing figure to opponents.

He was reputed to have shown his strength at the Australia Croatia Club in Glenorchy by lifting solid tables off the floor with his teeth.

This exhibition deterred anyone who was contemplating picking a fight with him as things got rowdy after celebrations amongst supporters and players following a Croatia win.

Vebbie’s son, Ibrahim (Ibro), who passed away in 2020, was also a notable player for Croatia, as well as NSL clubs Brisbane United and Wollongong City.

Vehbija is survived by his wife, Lynette, and daughter Fadila, and three grandchildren.