Off Season Odyssey – Part 42: South or West

The road is a hungry thing, calling, even when it’s made of nothing but sand.

[This piece was first published in late 2012. It was part of a series where Old Dog jumped in the ute and travelled from the south of Tasmania to far north Queensland and west to the Mallee in South Australia. Read more of Matt’s pieces by clicking on his name in the left sidebar.]

Local Footy: The club where Blunnies mattered

Matt Zurbo’s first footy club (many years ago) was a suburban club where the blokes worked hard and played hard. Young Matt Zurbo was made welcome because of his Blundstone boots. Not footy boots. His work boots.

The Unconformity Cup – Nowhere Footy

Old Dog goes to Queenstown where he plays a fun (but proper) footy match on the famous gravel oval during the Unconformity Festival. [This is an Old Dog special – JTH]

Almanac Books: Champions All extract – Players on Players

What do players say about other players? Continuing our highlights from Old Dog’s book, Champions All, an excerpt from the Chapter: Players on Players 2010s.

Almanac Books: Champions All extract – 1976 Grand Final

Continuing our highlights from Old Dog’s book, Champions All, an excerpt featuring the 1976 Grand Final.

Almanac Books: Champions All extract – 1970 Grand Final

Continuing our highlights from Old Dog’s book, Champions All, an excerpt featuring the 1970 Grand Final.

Almanac Books: Champions All extract – Ian Paton The Club Soldier

Continuing our highlights from Old Dog’s book, Champions All, an excerpt from the Chapter: The Club Soldier, Ian Paton, Hawthorn.

Almanac Books: Champions All extract – Mick Martyn on what happened in Bali

Continuing our highlights from Old Dog’s book, Champions All, leading up to the Grand Final. Mick Martyn on what happened at Bali.

Almanac Books: Champions All extract – Grand Finals 2000s

Champions All is finally out. 700 pages of punchy stories from 171 legends of the game over 8 decades of AFL/VFL footy. Today’s extract has players discussing the Grand Finals in the 2000s.

Almanac Books: Champions All Extract – Ken Hunter on depression

Old Dog’s book, Champions All is finally out. 700 pages of punchy stories from 171 legends of the game over 8 decades of AFL/VFL footy. The honesty in it is often overwhelming. History often looks very different from the inside. Today, Ken Hunter on Depression.

Sound. (or This is still Australia: they’re utes not trucks)

Matt Zurbo thinks his way through some recent footy moments – life moments – and listens for the sounds, and observes the silences.

Almanac Books: Champions All – A History of AFL/VFL Football in the Player’s Own Words Part 2

Part 2: Champions All – A History of AFL/VFL Football in the Player’s Own Words by Matt Zurbo. In this extract players talk about the clubs in the 2010s from Hawthorn to Western Bulldogs.

Almanac Books: Champions All – A History of AFL/VFL Football in the Players’ Own Words – Part 1

Matt Zurbo has a new book published called Champions All – A History of AFL/VFL Football in the Players’ Own Words . In this extract players talk about the clubs in the 2010s from Adelaide to GWS.

Almanac Local Footy: Small Time

With his book completed and footy season at a close, Matt Zurbo keeps his AFL watching to one game a week.

Almanac Umpiring: A Tough Gig

Matt Zurbo loves it when umpires come across as real and genuine. [And he’s inviting them to pop in for a beer – Ed]

Everyday Obits: Foundation Blokes

Bryan, a mate of Matt Zurbo’s, died in an accident the other day. He was a great fella as Old Dog explains in this tribute.

A Footy Season Greeting from The Old Dog

The Old Dog finds Christmas in March, with a pre-season message for everyone.

Training for Six

Matt Zurbo continues his training series – Training for 6

Training for Six: When four turn up!

Another skillful set of training drills from the master trainer Matt Zurbo.

Dick Clay: For the diehards

So many moments make up a passage of footy, a quarter of footy, a game of footy, a season of footy, the history of footy. Matt Zurbo has found a Dick Clay moment in the ’74 Grand Final which continues to inspire him.