Norwood took two Sugars into its team for the opening of the 1897 season. Newcomer Jim Sugars, a 19-year-old rookie who was born in Tavistock, Devon, England, in January 1878, just as the Norwood Football Club was taking shape, joined Bert Sugars, who had begun life at Strathalbyn and was entering his third season of senior football. There is no evidence they were related.
Saturday 8 May 1897 was a memorable day for both as Norwood almost whitewashed the newly named West Torrens team - formerly known as the Natives - 10.12 to 0.1 at Kensington Oval. Genial Jim, one of the cleverest handballers in the business, and Bert did not taste premiership success at Norwood and moved to other clubs.
Jim tried his luck in Western Australia. His name appeared in at least two pre-match squads for West Perth in late 1898 but there is no proof that he actually played a senior game. He returned to South Australia, where he enthusiastically helped build the revived West Adelaide club and gleefully wore the red and black at every opportunity. He played from 1900 to 1904 and was club secretary in 1903. He also served as a trainer and remained a loyal clubman for the rest of his days.
A talented cricketer for several clubs, he made 112 for Deaf Mutes out of a total of 300 runs amassed against Malvern in 1901. He also was a cricket umpire.
One of seven children of William and Harriet Sugars, Jim lived at Rose Park and was 76 when he died at Norwood on 6 August 1954. He was survived by his widow Elsie May and sons Steve, Ron, Ted, Bert and Reg. He is buried in West Terrace Cemetery
P Robins Sept 2018