Undefeated Premiership achieved in emphatic fashion
Nine years after Southport AFC and the GCAFL’s first undefeated premiership in 1966 the Magpies were to once again dominate.
Southport proved unbeatable as they swept aside all opposition winning 22 games straight. Coolangatta Blues challenged getting within three and four goals respectively during the home and away series. On Grand Final day (Click here to read article) however, the Magpies clicked into gear and held a ten-goal quarter time margin until the final siren.
Southport’s team of 1975 won seven matches by over 100 points and an incredible 15 by more than ten goals. In round 19 the Magpies defeated Preliminary Finalists Broadbeach by 197 points and the reserve grade on the same day kicked 53.25.343. The club’s combined senior and reserve score was 91.41.587. The reserve grade lost only one match for the season and was victorious by 25 goals in the Grand Final. It was a triumphant season for second year President Alan Mackenzie and the administration of the club. The playing group of 1975 was clearly the best seen on the Gold Coast. The team was one that paved the way for aspirations beyond the GCAFL.
Bill Ryan arrives
Bill Ryan (Photo) had already almost done it all in 167 games with
Geelong, playing in their losing Grand Final side of 1967 and representing
Victoria in 1971. After retiring from the VFL in 1972 he migrated to
Queensland and played for Coorparoo in the QAFL. A senior premiership still however, eluded him. His impact in
Brisbane was significant and his arrival on the Gold Coast was to prove the same. His boost to the morale of the Magpies was immediate (Click here to read article). Ryan’s Ruck work, marking and football nous were there for all to see. His leadership and direction of the team were subtle, but those within the Magpie camp new just how valuable he was. He tied for the Ralph Tobiano Award with Lindsay Fawns and won two other media awards for the season. Fawns and Ryan finished equal fourth in the Todd Medal whilst Zane Taylor finished second. His ten-goal game against Coolangatta in round ten (Click here to read article) was a highpoint. Many in
Queensland football believe the push for a team within the VFL commenced with a 1975 Gabba victory over
Queensland 16.29.125 defeated
Tasmania 16.7.103. Ryan captained
Queensland, kicked 5 goals and was named in the best players. He capped his season with best on ground displays in the Second Semi and Grand Final. Ryan finally had a senior premiership.
Headlines grabbed for all the wrong reasons
Gold Coast Australian Football made it to the front page of the Gold Coast Bulletin on no fewer than five occasions during 1975. Unfortunately none were for the Southport Magpies fine exploits. Journalists and the League President were threatened, umpires were assaulted and the Gold Coast Australian Football Umpire’s Association (GCAFUA) looked as if it would disband. Broadbeach Cats rise to their first finals was sullied by headlines that called for their expulsion from the League when they refused to stand down a suspended player. Crowd violence at a Coolangatta versus Southport match also gained headlines and the season finished with the Ron Todd Medalist on drug charges.