Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Leitchville premiership reunion

Leitchville Football Club will host a reunion this weekend to remember its premiership teams of the 1960s and '70s.

LUKE MCMANUS May 2, 2014 3:05am

Doug Hawken shows off one of Leitchville’s heritage jumpers which will be worn this weekend against Lockington-Bamawm United.

Doug Hawken played his last game for Leitchville in 1975.

The club won the Northern Districts Football League senior premiership that season but Hawken was missing in action.

The 1991-92 club president and current radio broadcaster was king-hit in the preliminary final against, of all clubs, Gunbower and copped a broken jaw for his troubles.

It would have been his third flag with the Maroons.

‘‘I never played after that,’’ Hawken said.

‘‘It really hurt not playing in the grand final. I played every game that season except for the grand final.

‘‘That was my biggest disappointment.’’

It wasn’t all doom and gloom for the already two-time premiership player.

Hawken had played an integral part in the club’s drought-breaking 1969 flag, while 1974 was also a bright season for the club.

Hawken described that period as ‘‘the beginning of a new era’’ in the club’s history and planned to share his fond memories at tomorrow’s three-pronged reunion at Leitchville.

The decorated teams will get together during the Bombers’ clash with Lockington-Bamawm United, enjoying a long lunch before half-time where they will be introduced one-by-one in front of the home crowd.

The specially made commemorative jumpers, which will be worn by the Leitchville-Gunbower players, will then be auctioned after the games.

About 37 jumpers will be auctioned, with each member of the winning teams listed below the number on the back.

‘‘The V is a lot lower than on the original guernseys,’’ Hawken said.

‘‘My number was 11... I think I’ll be fighting (current player) Hoby Bussey for it.’’

Hawken said he was looking forward to catching up with old teammates and finally honouring the 1969 flag after the 40-year reunion was overlooked.

Both coaches, John Hoiles (’69) and Peter O’Shea (1974-75) are expected to attend, with O’Shea travelling between Leitchville and another reunion in Mildura.

Hawken will also be busy overseeing the day’s special event, broadcasting the game with his Power Country FM team and watching his son, Matt, run around in the maroon and gold.

Hawken acknowledged co-organisers and fellow presidents O’Shea, Bruce Lunghusen, Jim Windridge and Kevin Gladman.

Luke McManus

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