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1996

 

Sharks pin faith in successful lower grade coach Danny Brennan

IT was a case of Southport returning to the traditional selection method when the club opted to appoint Danny Brennan as senior coach for 1996.

Brennan, who had previously coached State League with Sandgate, before a transfer in his job with a bank led him to the Sharks, had built an impressive record at Musgrave Hill with under-19 and reserve grade flags (four in all).

Brennan was also head assistant coach during one of Cameron O’Brien’s premiership years. Brennan inherited a Southport squad that contained most of the previous season’s names, boosted by the addition of Shem Aitken and Craig Wilson from Coolangatta, not to mention the signing of Brennan’s son Jeff, who was a quality defender/midfielder, and his younger sibling Rick, up from the lower grades.

Still with the Sharks were David Bain, Ian Dargie, David Johnston and Rod Mackay, while exciting ex-Footscray midfielder Michael ‘Magic’ McLean was to play several games with the Sharks as a drafted Brisbane Bears player.

Big Brent Green was still around and the club lured youngsters Grant Burgess and Todd Nener over from Broadbeach, and Ben Dalgleish from Palm Beach-Currumbin.

Brennan Snr’s debut match in charge was not the best because the Sharks were thumped by Mt Gravatt by 52 points at the Gabba in an AFL curtain-raiser match.

That ground proved to be a graveyard for Brennan because it was there that the Sharks eventually bowed out of the premiership race, beaten by 32 points by Morningside in the knockout first semi-final five months later.

Former coach Norm Dare resigned as football manager after accepting an assistant coaching role under Denis Pagan at AFL club North Melbourne. Dare had returned to the Sharks in an off-field capacity following his dismissal as recruiting chief with the Brisbane Bears.

So the Sharks went looking for a replacement and came up with Gary Watts, a Coolangatta stalwart who had both played and coached the Blues at Len Peak Oval and who was a renowned foe of Southport.

Yet Watts did extremely well in his role and forged a close association between Southport and Coolangatta.
He was responsible for getting a host of young Coolangatta talent to try their luck with the Sharks and Craig ‘Meat’ Wilson was among the first to transfer.

Also making the move north from the border to Musgrave Hill was Clint Watts, FM Gary’s son and a 17-year-old destined to become one of the club’s greats.

Coach Brennan and the match committee decided to blood Watts in seniors in an away match to arch enemies Morningside. Watts Jnr made the best player list that day, displaying clear signs of what was to come from him.

Certainly the Sharks and coach Brennan were not helped by a run of injuries going into the finals. They lost Green and Mackay, among others, then the usually ultra-reliable Wilson kicked 1.7 in the first semi-final when the Sharks dipped out of flag contention.

Season details: Games played 21, won 14, lost 7.
Best and fairest: David Johnston.
Leading goalkicker: Craig Wilson (50).

 

MATCH RESULTS 1996

Round 1 (Mar 30):
MT GRAVATT  3.3  9.9  11.16  16.22 (118)
SOUTHPORT      3.3  4.7   6.10      9.12 (66)
Southport goals: M McGuirk 2, S McKewan 2, S Aitken 2, B Green, T Simpson, N Mansbridge.
Southport best: S Aitken, J Brennan, T Simpson, D Johnston, D Bain, B Green.
At the Gabba, Brisbane.

Round 2 (Apr 7):
SOUTHPORT              3.4  4.12  8.15  18.16 (122)
KEDRON-GRANGE  1.1     3.4    7.7      8.10 (58)

Southport goals: C Richardson 3, N Mansbridge 3, J Brennan 2, B Green 2, S Aitken 2, T Simpson 2, D Bain 2, S McKewan, M Smith.
Southport best: D Bowtell, D Johnston, D Bain, T Simpson, J Parkinson, M McGuirk.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill.

Round 3 (Apr 14):
MORNINGSIDE  5.2  10.5  16.9  24.13 (157)
SOUTHPORT        3.3   7.3  10.5      13.8 (86)
Southport goals: R Mackay 5, A Turner 3, S Aitken 2, J Brennan, S McKewen, D Johnston.
Southport best: S Stephens, D Bowtell, R McKay, J Brennan, A Turner.
At Esplen Oval, Brisbane.

Round 4 (Apr 21):
SOUTHPORT  1.4  6.4   11.5  17.11 (113)
MAYNE            4.5  7.7  10.9    11.12 (78)

Southport goals: B Green 6, C Richardson 3, R Cashin 2, A Turner 2, D Bowtell, D Bain, M Smith, G Burgess
Southport best: C Richardson, R Thompson, S Young, B Green, T Simpson, L Hughes.
At Windsor Park, Brisbane.

Round 5 (Apr 28):
SOUTHPORT           1.2  7.7  13.9  15.15 (105)
WEST BRISBANE  0.6  3.6   7.10    12.14 (86)
Southport goals: C Wilson 3, B Green 3, C Richardson 2, M McLean 2, G Burgess, A Turner, D Bain, D Johnston, D Williams.
Southport best: T Simpson, M McGuirk, D Williams, R Cashin, S Stephens, B Green.
At Chelmer Oval, Brisbane.

Round 6 (May 12):
MT GRAVATT  3.3  12.8  14.11  21.15 (141)
SOUTHPORT     4.2    5.3      7.5        9.6 (60)
 
Southport goals: C Wilson 5, B Green 3, T Nener.
Southport best: R Thompson, D Bowtell, M McGuirk, C Richardson, T Nener.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill.

Round 7 (May 19):
SOUTHPORT             6.4  13.4    17.5   20.8 (128)
KEDRON-GRANGE  3.3    7.7  10.14   14.15 (99)
Southport goals: S Aitken 7, B Green 5, C Richardson 2, I Dargie 2, S Young, B Dalgleish.
Southport best: B Green, S Stephens, I Dargie, S Aitken, D Bowtell, D Bain.
At Anderson Oval, Brisbane.


Round 8 (May 26):
SOUTHPORT       4.2  5.4  10.8  11.10 (76)
MORNINGSIDE  2.2  5.3     8.4      9.7 (61)
Southport goals: C Wilson 4, R Mackay 3, M McLean 2, D Bain, J Parkinson.
Southport best: S Aitken, D Bowtell, I Dargie, D Bain, R Cashin, A Lowe.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill.


Round 9 (Jun 1):
SOUTHPORT  4.5  7.10  9.15  11.17 (83)
MAYNE            2.3   7.5     9.8    12.8 (80)

Southport goals: R Mackay 4, C Richardson, S Young, M McLean, B Green, S Aitken, D Bain, C Wilson.
Southport best: C Richardson, M McGuirk, D Bowtell, C Wilson, S Stephens, D Bain.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill (lights).

Round 10 (Jun 8):
SOUTHPORT  6.1  12.2  17.4  20.5 (125)
MAYNE            0.2    7.5  10.6    13.9 (87)
Southport goals: C Wilson 4, R Cashin 4, B Green 4, R Mackay 3, S Young 2, J Parkinson 2, S Stephens.
Southport best: D Bain, I Dargie, M McGuirk, D Bowtell, R Cashin, N Mansbridge.
At Chelmer Oval, Brisbane.

Round 11 (Jun 16):
MT GRAVATT  7.5  14.7  16.9  22.12 (144)
SOUTHPORT     1.0    5.2  12.5    17.6 (108)
Southport goals: S Aitken 7, S Young 3, R Mackay 2, C Wilson 2, S Stephens, B Green, T Simpson.
Southport best: D Bain, S Aitken, S Stephens, R Thompson, T Simpson, C Richardson.
At Dittmer Park, Brisbane.

Round 12 (Jun 23):
SOUTHPORT              1.5  5.7  6.9  11.12 (78)
KEDRON-GRANGE  1.5   2.7  6.9  10.12 (72)
Southport goals: B Green 3, S Young 2, S Stephens, S Aitken, T Simpson, D Johnston, L Hughes, G Burgess.
Southport best: I Dargie, L Hughes, S Young, R Thompson, D Johnston, T Simpson.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill.

Round 13 (Jun 30):
SOUTHPORT       2.2  4.4  10.8  11.9 (75)
MORNINGSIDE  3.1  4.3    4.4     8.8 (56)
Southport goals: C Wilson 3, S Young 2, S Stephens, R Mackay, S Aitken, D Bain, L Hughes, N Mansbridge.
Southport best:  D Johnston, B Green, S Young, I Dargie, C Watts, S Smith.
At Esplen Oval, Brisbane.

Round 14 (Jul 7):
SOUTHPORT  5.3  9.6  16.13  25.16 (166)
MAYNE            1.3  2.5    3.11      6.15 (51)

Southport goals: C Wilson 7, R Mackay 5, I Dargie 2, S Stephens 2, S Aitken 2, B Green, D Bain, D Johnston, J Parkinson, S Frances, N Mansbridge, S Smith.
Southport best: D Bowtell, N Mansbridge, S Stephens, D Johnston, C Wilson, L Hughes.
At Windsor Park, Brisbane.

Round 15 (Jul 13):
SOUTHPORT     1.1    8.2  14.6  16.8 (104)
MT GRAVATT  5.2  10.3  11.5    15.7 (97)
Southport goals: R Mackay 6, C Wilson 4, T Simpson 2, D Johnston 2, C Richardson, N Mansbridge.
Southport best: C Richardson, B McMahon, N Mansbridge, R Mackay, T Simpson, D Bowtell.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill.

Round 16 (Jul 21):
WEST BRISBANE  5.3  9.5  11.9  19.14 (128)
SOUTHPORT           1.3  5.7  7.14      7.15 (47)
Southport goals: R Mackay 3, S Stephens 2, C Wilson 2.
Southport best: C Mansbridge, R Thompson, D McMahon, L Hughes, S Stephens, D Johnston.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill.

Round 17 (Jul 28):
SOUTHPORT              3.7  9.11  14.12  23.15 (153)
KEDRON-GRANGE  1.4    3.7     7.12    12.14 (86)

Southport goals: C Wilson 7, R Mackay 5, C Mansbridge 3, N Mansbridge 2, C Richardson, M Dibiase, I Dargie, M McLean, M Smith, L Hughes.
Southport best: C Mansbridge, C Wilson, D Bowtell, R Mackay, D McMahon, C Watts.
At Anderson Oval, Brisbane.

Round 18 (Aug 4):
SOUTHPORT       4.4  4.7    8.9  13.11 (89)
MORNINGSIDE  3.5  5.9  9.12   10.14 (74)
Southport goals: C Mansbridge 4, R Mackay 2, L Hughes 2, C Richardson, S Stephens, T Simpson, C Wilson, N Mansbridge.
Southport best: S Stephens, T Simpson, D Johnston, L Hughes, G Burgess, C Mansbridge.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill.

Round 19 (Aug 10):
SOUTHPORT  3.4  8.5  13.8  16.9 (105)
MAYNE            2.4  6.5   8.7    10.8 (68)
Southport goals: C Wilson 7, L Hughes 3, C Richardson 2, M Smith 2, B Green, N Mansbridge.
Southport best: D Johnston, M McGuirk, C Wilson, C Watts, L Hughes, R Thompson.
At Fankhauser Reserve, Musgrave Hill (lights).

Round 20 (Aug 18):
WEST BRISBANE  4.2  9.5  13.13  17.18 (120)
SOUTHPORT          3.3  6.4      7.6    11.11 (77)
Southport goals: M Smith 4, L Hughes 2, M Dibiase, S Young, D Bain, D Johnston, G Burgess.
Southport best: A Greenall, I Dargie, M Dibiase, R Thompson, L Hughes, D Bain.
At Chelmer Oval, Brisbane.

First semi-final (Aug 24):
MORNINGSIDE  4.2  8.3   12.6  16.10 (106)
SOUTHPORT        2.2  6.8   6.13   10.14 (74)

Southport goals: R Mackay 3, L Hughes 3, M McGuirk, D Bain, C Wilson, G Burgess.
Southport best: I Dargie, R Thompson, A Greenall, M Smith, L Hughes, D Bain.
At the Gabba, Brisbane.