AFL Round 14 – Hawthorn v Brisbane Lions: Some undies have all the luck

It’s been blasting cold down in Tassie these last couple of weeks so for many of us locals thermals have been de rigueur for any outdoor based activities.  But the forecast for Launceston for game day is a mild 15 (it’s all relative) so I opt to forego the extra layer of merino under the jeans for my lucky Royboy undies instead.  They haven’t done quite as many seasons as Dustin Fletcher – they’re into their eighteenth – but like him, they’re still delivering and still in pretty good nick.  Good for another few seasons yet, a testament to late 20th Century synthetics, performance enhancing powders and love and devotion.

I first wore them to a Roys V Saints match at Waverley in 1995 – after a horror start to the season of 8 or 9 loses, we finally won this one.  Lucky undies!  They were then fated to join me at every Fitzroy game I attended for the rest of the season – we lost the lot – and then all the matches of 1996.  Between us we saw one more win and about fifteen more losses, most of which were thrashings.  Oh yeah, and the club folded too.   And Melbourne supporters think they’re doing it tough.

I might have been taken by a new Lion in 1997 but I wasn’t attracted to the flash new Lion undies in the shops – I was sticking to my lucky ones.  Hey, why not, they’d been there for two of the most delirious Fitzroy victories I’d ever experienced.  And they had beautiful FFC motifs and a bunch of really, really angry Lions plastered all over them – hot, hot, hot!

Alas, someone clearly forgot to tell the team I was wearing them – for the next few years the new look Lions proceeded to lose most of their games in Melbourne.  Still, I persisted with wearing them to every match I attended, knowing full well that I was always wearing my lucky Roys undies whenever we did happen to win.

Maybe it was a change of washing powder (quite possible – I became single for the first time in many years); perhaps it was because one day I accidentally wore them inside out to a match…whatever!…but come season 2001, everything changed.  And there, intimately with me on the journey to glory were those lucky Royboy undies.

We ended up sharing so many great football moments over the next few years – if I had to choose a highlight, it’d be the 2001 Grand Final.  There we were, me in a Roys jersey and cape (actually it was a flag), the lucky Royboy undies on the outside of my daks.  Hey presto, Super Royboy!  Oh how their shimmering maroon, blue and gold thread shone brilliantly in the bright light of that late September sun, the crowns atop the heads of the really, really angry Lions  looking so perfect…

Of course those heady days had to end eventually.  Not that I’m complaining.  How could I, when I got more joy from the Lions and those lucky undies over three seasons than I could ever have anticipated.  Maybe there’s a finite dose of good fortune associated with any lucky talisman?   It would at least explain the lousy footy and fortune of the Lions since the dizzy days of the triple crowns?  (Mind you, Geelong lucky undies seem to keep giving and giving and giving).

And so, not unexpectedly, the lack of Lionesque good fortune continued at almost-balmy Launceston on Sunday.  The Hawks led all day, were always in control and had plenty of options all over the ground.  As for the Lions, they were okay in spurts, even managing to pull within 16 points of the Hawks midway through the third quarter.  But then the Hawks took their game to another level, booting the next seven goals to snuff out any chance of a Lions victory.  Took them all of twenty five minutes either side of the ¾ time break.

The Hawks theme song played out over the cooling late afternoon air as I wandered towards my car and the long drive south.  Yep, a happy team indeed, and looking like this year could well deliver the big prize once more.   Good luck to them – they’re a tough and talented team.

One thing has always bothered me with Hawthorn though:  the club colours.  Appalling, the worst in the comp in my view, a set of tones only a dedicated fan could truly love.  But what a perfect combo for a pair of lucky undies.



HAWTHORN                   3.8       8.9      15.15      21.17   (143)
BRISBANE LIONS            1.2       5.5      7.7          12.13   (85)

Hawthorn: Franklin 4, Roughead 4, Savage 3, Breust 3, Hale, Simpkin, Lewis, Smith, Gunston, Shiels, Hill
Brisbane Lions: Brown 4, Golby 2, Rockliff, Hanley, Rich, Black, Yeo, Lisle

Hawthorn:  Roughhead, Franklin, Gibson, Sewell, Mitchell, Smith
Brisbane Lions:  Rich, Brown, Moloney, Leuenberger, Hanley

Umpires: Armstrong, Jeffrey, Fisher

Crowd: 15,796

Votes:  3 Sewell , 2 Roughhead, 1 Gibson

About Adam Muyt

Born into rugby league, found aussie rules, fell for soccer, flirts a little with union. Author of 'Maroon & Blue - recollections and tales of the Fitzroy Football Club' (Vulgar Press, 2006). Presently working on a history of postwar Dutch migrants and soccer in Australia.


  1. Rick Kane says

    Dear Mr Muyt

    Did you say you’ve been wearing them undies for 18 years? So they’re rusted on, heh? That’s a lot of words about one pair of undies. The kids might say TMI. I wish you well with them but may I suggest you swap to a lucky rabbit foot, might be slightly less smelly.

    Oh, and you neglected to mention two more great Buddy goals, the second seeming to follow the earth’s perfect arc as it sailed around the flank, pocket and through the middle.


  2. Adam Muyt says

    Rick, Davenport made these undies – they should be proud of the product. Seem impossible to kill. So no, I can’t change over to anything else to bring on some luck.

Leave a Comment