Norwood Premierships Mixed Fortunes

(March 2012)

How many games does it take to win a Premiership? How long is a piece of string?

Since 1878, the  Norwood Football  club has been blessed with 27 league  premierships as well as 19 at reserves level; under 19s have won 17, under  17s won 9, and the  under 16s won in  2009.

However, over the years we have  experienced several lean periods at  league level when it comes to ultimate success; those periods  being 1908-1921, 1930-1940, 1951-1974, 1985-1996 and  from 1998 to 2011.

This got me thinking – how many players have played the least number of games, those who played the most games before  winning a premiership with  Norwood.  Additionally,  I wanted to  know how many footballers have played the most football at Norwood without being rewarded with  a league premiership. 

For example, Perc McCallum began in 1930, the year after the1929 premiership, and ended in 1940, the year before our next  flag in 1941.  At least he had the honour of coaching  that  team to the  flag.  Goal kicking  ace  Bruce Schultz (124 games) was  unlucky when a career ending knee injury prevented him from  playing in the 1941 premiership team.

There are currently 51 players from 1907 who have played 100 games or more for the club, yet have not tasted premiership success.  

Perhaps the most fortunate players were those who played the least number of games for Norwood before tasting success.  

These players are:
2 games Cecil  l Martin (1925),  Ron  Reimann (1948)
3 games John ‘Mick’  Rudd (1948)
4 games Oswald Murphy (1907),  Reg  Plunkett (1923),  Ron Mcdougall (1925),  Brian  Burke (1946)
5 games Ern Wadham (1922)
6 games William  Pedder (1948) 7 games Alexander ‘ Pat’  Hall (1948)
More recent players are Brian Adamson who played 8 games in 1978, (although he previously played for West  Perth), Jim Thiel who played in the 1975 premiership after only 9 games,  and Glen Vardanega played his 9th game in the 1984 grand Final.

These statistics highlight the contrasting fortunes of many  players in the club’s history. The most poignant figures  are for those who gave outstanding service over the long, lean periods without ever reaping the reward of a  Norwood  premiership.

Greame Adams
NFC History Group

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