The Perfect Mallee trophy
The Perfect Mallee Trophy
A film by Malcolm McKinnon
Football Stories from Country Victoria, An initiative of the Victorian Country Football League and the State Library of Victoria, 2007
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Malcolm McKinnon, 2006.
Underbool's triumph in the 1975 Mallee Football League Grand Final is commemorated with a peculiar and truly unique trophy.
Thank you to Chris Brown.
CHRIS BROWN: Given that we're the Mallee Football League, the perfect thing to make any trophies out of would have to be the Mallee stump. The local postmaster, who was a woodturner in his spare time, decided to commemorate the 1975 Grand Final with a trophy that was truly unique.
He got a good Mallee stump, and he had to try and find one that was well-dried and wouldn't crack too much as it dried out. It took him a heck of a long time to turn it. And then he made the lines down for the seams in the football, put the laces on, and then had a little plaque of every player, trainers, coaches, president secretary, and the whole lot, just to commemorate what happened in 1975.
1975 was just an amazing year. It doesn't matter where you go. And I went coaching and won a number of other premierships, but your first is always something special. And with your own mates and with your own club, especially to go from a club that was pretty well down and took a lot of beatings, to be able to get up and win a premiership was just always the best feeling. It always has been. And yeah, always will be.
Because we didn't have any social club rooms at the time to store any of our memorabilia, everything was stored at the pub. And as different publicans come and go, some don't like the memorabilia that apparently collects dust, and so he decided he'd clean the place out. And I went past one day and he was heading out to the tip with all of this football memorabilia in the back of his Ute.
And so I quickly went in and grabbed the lot. And I've still got a fair bit of it, but it's all there for the football club, for the future. And it's interesting how some people just don't value these things that others really think are fairly precious.
I just think, mainly because of where we live, in the middle of the Mallee, it was called the Mallee Footy League, and we end up with a trophy made out of a Mallee stump, you can't get much more significant than that. And to remember a premiership in the town for a standalone team at the time, I think it's pretty magic, the way it's been remembered.