VAFA Premier C – Old Ivanhoe Grammar v Fitzroy: Ploughboys and Engines

By King George III


The background tintinnabulation of the bellbirds of Chelsworth Park Ivanhoe rang all day in the battle between the ploughboys and engines. When the contest had to be won the disciplined, lionhearted, mechanical Roys defeated the hard-fighting, dirt-tilling, dexterous Hoers.


How happy are we that we can watch these teams of young men or women free to gambol on the fields in a battle without the sound of machine gun, mortar or shellfire that successive generations of our servicemen and women over 103 years have had to, to guarantee the freedom we all enjoy today.


Be reminded of Edward Kenna VC, for example, who, at the age of 25, using the rabbit shooting skills he honed with his brother Jack as a teenager, to feed his family when their father was incapacitated (from WW1 injuries), bravely and almost single-handedly bringing his under fire platoon to safety. Imagine any of our sons or daughters brandishing a Bren gun from the hip to take an enemy machine-gun post with bullets passing between their body and arms and after exhausting his magazine, continuing with rifle to take out enemy gunner after gunner so that his unit overtook the enemy bunker without further loss. Edward Kenna VC* was again a hero in 1947 two years after his war experience when he kicked the winning point in the Grand Final to give his Western District, Victoria, city of Hamilton victory over Casterton, until then undefeated in the season. Edward Kenna VC knew the horror of war but saw through its fog what was worth fighting for.


With the Roys showing no system in the first quarter, a situation adroitly pinpointed by Coach Luke Mahoney in his address at the break and evoking the sort of wake up that a freezing cold face washer brings to an early morning sleepy head, the boys clicked into synchronicity to produce 13-goals thereafter to win the match easing down, reviving the acausal connection of the previous week when, against OG’s, 13 goals straight were kicked between the 5thand 20thmajors before the foot came of the pedal.


The return of the ‘Bambino’ Nino Lazzaro drew a large contingent of away supporters and his superlative time and space choreography with the ball did not disappoint them. He finished with three goals, most importantly our first in an otherwise goalless quarter and showed the creativity in the air and on the ground that will enthral many more fans if he gets his opportunity in the big leagues with the Bombers. Well done Nino!


The games this year of some of the team veterans continue to be vintage. This week Rory Angiolella, Julian Turner, Matt Kyroussis, Max Ellis, Toby Hudson –Bevege and Ross Borland were superb when they needed to be. They sense, maybe without consciously knowing, founder of analytical psychology, Carl Jung’s Synchronizität concept that this year’s mix of youth and experience will somehow give meaning as to why they have persisted in playing so long for seemingly so little and the urgency to seize the season.



Old Ivanhoe Grammarians 8.10-58
Fitzroy FC  14.17-101



*See the book ‘The Victoria Cross Australia Remembers’ by Michael C. Madden




  1. Good stuff as usual

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