Griffith's greats honoured in Team of the Century

Australian football

GRIFFITH has produced some outstanding footballers over the past 100 years - and the legends among them have now been immortalised.

The Swans named their Team of the Century on Saturday night in front of nearly 300 guests at the club's centenary dinner at the Griffith Ex-Servicemen's Club.

Led by 1964 premiership skipper Peter Morris, who was named captain, the team was selected by a panel including Bob Speirs, George Duncan, Ernie Wade and club historian Trevor Harrison, whose tireless groundwork laid the foundation for the entire weekend.

It reads as a roll call of Griffith's all-time best players, featuring a hard-nosed backline marshalled by the only player to have made more than 300 appearances for the Swans, Sid Robins, a midfield powered by former South Melbourne ruckman Don Keyter and 1989 Jim Quinn medallist Les Parish, and a forward set-up anchored by the great Ron O'Neill, who kicked an incomprehensible 256 goals in just 38 games across two seasons in the 1960s.

"The selectors have done a wonderful job - it's a great side. If it ran out tomorrow it'd decimate almost every side in the country," said local solicitor and club stalwart Ian Geddes, who had the privilege of reading out the team and presenting its inductees with special centenary mugs.

"It's always been a great community and the people who have looked after the club over the years have carried on the tradition and done a fantastic job."

The evening was launched by guest speaker Sam Kekovich, who delivered a typically rapid-fire monologue that honoured the role sporting institutions play in wider Australian society.

"This has always been a very, very inclusive club that's looked after its players," Geddes said.

"The club's really run with the history of the town. Our town's 100 years old next year and the game's been played here for that period of time.

"Even during the second World War and tough times they were able to play a game of football."

President Jeff Harris said he was honoured to be at the helm of a club like the Swans.

"It's easy to lose sight of what it might mean to those from generations past," he said.

"Seeing the guys that have travelled and the sheer numbers we've got, it speaks volumes.

"Having seen the weekend come together and the hard work everyone's put into it, it's very pleasing and obviously a great honour to be involved with this club."

GRIFFITH SWANS TEAM OF THE CENTURY

FB: Phillip Rowston, Tom Roulent, Malcolm Brauman

HB: Geoff Willis (coach), Sid Robins, Vic Hathaway

C: Terry Wood, Robert McKenzie, Michael Duncan

HF: Len Sexton, Grant Luhrs, Peter Morris (captain)

FF: William Wade, Ron O’Neill, Kevin Kirkpatrick

Foll: Don Keyter, Les Parish, Alf Anstee

Int: Frank Conlan, Ted Feltwell, John Foley, Gerard Toscan

Emerg: Adley Biron, Jonathan O’Dwyer, Guy Orton, Bill Tyndall

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