Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Social club artefact Wednesday - Team of the Century team sheet

I found a small bunch of these during my social club clean out a few years back. Not being there on the team of the century night, I assume these were made available on all the tables. Of course, the team of the century concept has always been something that's baffled me slightly, not only because it was clearly influenced by both the AFL's centenary celebrations as well as the millenarianism that was in vogue at the time, but also because the club was barely 41 years old and well short of the century mark. Of course as with all such endeavours there was also controversy regarding the selections. George Donikian noted at the time (in an interview with the Four Diegos I believe; wherever the link to that transcript was, it's now gone) that Ulysses Kokkinos was left out due to character issues. But perhaps the most interesting decision was to have Michael Petkovic in as first choice goalkeeper, ahead of the very popular Peter Laumets. While Petkovic did have the runs on the board with two national championships, his tenure at South up until that time had been comparatively brief; then again, Oscar Crino's South stint was much shorter. Petkovic is also the only person in the team of the century to have begun his South career in the 1990s - his 1996 starting date coming in seven years after the other most recent inductees. More disturbing perhaps in hindsight, is that due to the circumstances we find ourselves in, there will probably never be another player that could be included in any future or revised team of the century affair.

6 comments:

  1. Interesting that the only two years not represented (for the period 1961 to 2000) in the starting 11 are 1977 and 1978.

    Does it indicate that the club was not quite ready for a National League? History shows that the major Victorian clubs were rushed into joining due to Mooroolbarks entry.

    Savvas Tzionis

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  2. Maybe they just planned their entry poorly, and after a very solid 1972-1976 period, the renewal of the team wasn't handled well?

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    1. That was probably a major factor.

      With the domination of the NSL in the early years by the Sydney teams, I wonder if the reluctance of the Victorian teams to enter the new league was partly based on the knowledge that Sydney has the more money to splash around?

      Savvas Tzionis

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    2. The traditional historical view has been that the Victorian clubs feared reprisals from the VSF for leaving their competitions, but your idea also has some merit. Then again, the Bergers and teams like Adelaide City, West Adelaide, even Brisbane City were often challenging near the top of the table by season's end.

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    3. So the VSF got their revenge? Like 27 years later?!! Its like Kramer removing desiccants in the clothes of the Punto Mayo store? "These clothes won't last 5 years without them!"

      As for the early days of the NSL, it was often a case of the Victorian team coming second. You could argue that the 1987 to 1990 period was worse for the Victorians, where all the grand finals were contested by the Sydney teams.

      Savvas Tzionis

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  3. I find it really disturbing that Petkovic was named team of the century keeper as well as the ommission of Kokkinos and even more so Con Nestorides. What was the panel that made this decision smoking? what were the criterias? Where's Alun Evans, Charlie Egan, Dougie Brown?
    This was really poorly done in my opinon

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