Almanac Footy History: New Ireland v Vunakanau Tigers, Rabaul, 1972.



David Bridie has had a long association with Papua New Guinea and the many islands of the southern Pacific. The people. Their culture. Music. Sport. As we know, he is one of life’s great enthusiasts. Every now and then he takes the time to send a photo or pen a few words of interest. And, of course, we post his Wantok Newsletter from time to time.


This week he sent in this photo of a footy match between New Ireland and Vunakanau Tigers at Queen’s park in Rabaul in 1972. We would love to hear from anyone who played in the game or watched the game. If anyone can identify any of the people in the photo please let us know via the comments section below.






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  1. I lived in PNG 1963-1976 and actually played Aussie Rules in Port Moresby. Our club wore old South Melbourne colours: white with a red V.

    One of the gurus of footy in New Britain (Rabaul is the main town) was Henry Bodman. Unfortunately he passed a few years back.

    But contact Keith Jackson on PNG Attitude, a blogsite devoted to all matters relating to PNG. He has dozens of contributors who are old-hand PNG residents from what we call the taim bipo (the time before) and I’m sure one of more of these people will be able to help David.

  2. David and Richard, Keith Jackson just happens to be my ‘over-the-back-fence’ neighbour in Noosaville. Small world! So John Harms and I asked Keith to spread the word about this match through his blog ‘PNG Attitude’ – which he has now done. Hopefully his additional effort will bear fruit.

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