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The complete history of the Mighty Magpies

3 May 1919 | Round 1

  • South Melbourne
  • vs.
  • Collingwood

Lake Oval (Away)

  • 6.13 (49)

    • QT 13.1

    • QT 23.5

    • QT 34.9

    • QT 46.13

  • -

  • 9.8 (62)

    • QT 13.1

    • QT 24.5

    • QT 37.6

    • QT 49.8

Match Report


There were but few new men in the colours of either side when Collingwood and South Melbourne ment before about 15,000 people on the South Melbourne Cricket-ground, but each side discovered at least one good promise for the future.

The conditions were all favourable to a good game, a very slight breeze being of some help to the side kicking to the lake end, and South Melbourne were, on the average, faster, but Collingwood in those early stages showed more judgement and certainly more accuracy in passing. A new umpire, Collins, who made a very satisfactory debut in League football, was especially severe on the push behind rule, both actual and accidental offences in that way being punished without discrimination. On the other hand, he gave the players more license than usual in holding on to the ball, though that never had the effect of in any way spoiling the game.

During the third stage Collingwood got an effective lead of three goals, and on their play up to the close of that quarter seemed to be decidedly winners, especially when immediately upon the start of the last term good work by E. Wilson and Wraith gave them another goal. From that point until the finish of the game the advantage was most decidedly with South Melbourne, and, given ordinary success in shooting for goal, they should have at least equalised the position. Collingwood seemed rather rattled at that stage; their skill in exchanges fell away, and South Melbourne, still keeping up their pace, appeared to outlast them in superior condition. They got the ball constantly within range, but a succession of futile behinds was their only material reward.

The first quarter was evenly played, the South being rather the quicker of the two into action. Within a few minutes Woods passed from the wing to Barbour, who got their first goal. After misses by Robertson on one side and Curtis on the other, good play between Laxton, Pannam, and Lumsden gave the last-named Collingwood’s first goal. Then Pearson, a new man in the South colours, and Walton added a goal for each side in quick succession. Barbour was rather lucky in getting South Melbourne’s third goal, for a Collingwood man swung him almost a complete circle, and was still holding him when Barbour at short range scored the goal. With most umpires the goal would have been anticipated by a free kick to the other side. Laxton got the third for Collingwood at an angle, and each finished with 3-1 for the quarter.

In the early part of the second quarter Collingwood were playing a first-rate game, but not a scoring one. Indeed there was very little scoring in that quarter, the only goal scored being by Curtis for Collingwood. At half time Collingwood has 4-5 to South Melbourne’s 3-5, and deserved their lead, for they played the better football in the term.

On starting the third quarter Wraith got Collingwood’s fifth goal immediately upon the kick-off, but both O’Halloran and Laird missed easy chances for South before Hiskins, from a free kick and a long one, brought their fourth goal. E. Wilson, one of Collingwood’s new men, scored their sixth, and at that stage the Magpies were exchanging very coolly and effectively, and were still ahead at the last change, with scores of 7-6 to the South’s 4-9.

When Wraith bagged their eighth goal it seemed to be all over, especially as, with a goal by Robertson for the South wedged in between, Curtis almost immediately got Collingwood’s ninth. Thence on South Melbourne had all the better of the game, which became rather scattered, and a good deal of the method of the earlier stages was dropped. Doherty got their sixth goal, but several good chances, notably by Barbour, were missed, and Collingwood won a first-rate contest with the scores thus: – COLLINGWOOD, 9 goals 8 behinds (62 points). SOUTH MELBOURNE, 6 goals 13 behinds (49 points).

There was no cooler or better player in Collingwood colours than Walton. Indeed his coolness was amazing. He seemed to make very little effort, yet his opponents could never get their hands on him. McCarthy, the captain, played a determined, dashing game, whether in the ruck or out of it, and, though Huges worked tremendously hard in the pack for Collingwood, he was not nearly so successful as usual in holding the ball. He was generally first to touch the ball from the throw-in, but it was touch and go. Wraith was one of their quickest and most efficient forwards. Dobright (half-back) played hard and successfully all through, and one of their best defenders was Brown. Pannam was, as usual, very conspicuous on the wing. A new boy in their colours, E. Wilson, who was hitherto, it is said, played very little football of any kind, showed a natural talent for the game, and more than justified his choice. In the earlier stages especially Lamsden also did some useful service for Collingwood.

For South Melbourne there was no one who played better all through than little Doherty. He was the quickest at the start, and in the last stage, when South Melbourne were on top, no one did more for them. Both the wingmen, Woods and Tandy – but Woods especially – were of constant use. Caldwell was cool, quick, effective, as he always is; O’Halloran more conspicuous at the start than the finish, and Laird, a successful forward in everything but goal-kicking. The best of their new men is a smartly built soldier forward named Pearson. While the match was played in a good spirit, there were lots of misconduct outside the barrier. One row followed another, and the police were kept busy. Football rivalries seemed to have had little to do with it, but whisky competitions a great deal.

1919 ‘FAST GAME AT SOUTH MELBOURNE.’, The Argus(Melbourne, Vic. : 1848 – 1957), 5 May, p. 9, viewed 21 September, 2015,

Team Stats

  • # Guernsey
  • GL Goals
  • B Behinds
  • K Kicks
  • H Handballs
  • D Disposals
  • M Marks
  • HO Hit Outs
  • FF Frees For
  • FA Frees Against
  • T Tackles
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