Sunday, October 16, 2011


Dear Members,

Another season ends and it will not be long before we start training for 2012. 2011 has had its ups and downs, but in the end the famous ‘Magpie Spirit’ lives on.  We formally record our thanks to the Board of Directors and Management of Wests Ashfield for once again being our PRINCIPAL SPONSOR. We acknowledge their munificent generosity. This report contains some interesting facts and information so I hope you take the opportunity to read through it.  It is good to see that another Wests Magpies junior; Matt Groat made his NRL debut with Wests Tigers this year.  We congratulate Matt on this great achievement.

Board of Directors.

Chairperson Mr Paul Dillon, Deputy Ms Julie Romero, Mr Dennis Burgess and Mr Bob Cairns. Each Director worked hard ensuring the Club remained viable in terms of financial stability and performance. I would also like to acknowledge former Directors Messer’s Mike Bailey, Ron Powell, Mick Liubinskas, Bob Ivison, Peter Mehl and George Downie who left within the past 12 months or so.
Other valued friends and generous sponsors.
Sydney Credit Union
Carney Spaul Marketing gear supplier
Prime Physiotherapy
Alsco Linen Services, Ingleburn
Pratten Park Magpies
Elastoplast’s strapping supplier
Fruit Lovers, Moorebank
Wests Leagues Club, Leumeah
The Whitlam Leisure Centre, Liverpool
Rigg Place Medical Centre, Bonnyrigg
Mr Frame, Ingleburn
Macarthur Ford, Campbelltown

Campbelltown and Liverpool City Councils, The Whitlam Leisure Centre.

We acknowledge the support of Ms Sally Pratt, CCC, Ms Michelle Treloar, LCC and the Management and staff, The Whitlam Centre, Liverpool.

NSW Cup.
Leo Epifania, Head Coach and Jason Williams, Assistant Coach. David Mc Ewan, Mark Cudmore, Mick Stierli, John Harbon, Noel Cummings, Valerie Mc Ewan, Bluey Schafer Jeff Aplitt, Charlie Tuxford, Linda Kitchen, Matt Ryan, Ian Phillips, Keith Hoare, Steve Reeves and Steve Hartas.  Ball boys Dean Woodley, Turoa Williams, Ryan Topolski and Ben Kitchen.  Club Captain Rocky Trimarchi and V/Cpt Mitch Achurch. Medical Team Dr Inanch Mehmet, Dr Arash Nabavi, Greg Williams, Daniel Wainwright and Tim Foulcher, Prime Physiotherapy.
This year the team record seven wins and one draw. The last five rounds pitched the boys against the Bulldogs (eventual 2011 premiers) Sharks (2nd place) Auckland (2011 grand finalists) Windsor (sitting one point outside the top eight) and Manly. They defeated the Sharks, Windsor and Manly, drew with Auckland with a loss to the Bulldogs, who they led until the final minutes of the game.  (In the last eight rounds we recorded 5 wins, 1 draw and 2 losses)  They certainly finished the year off strongly.

NSWRL NSW Cup Player of the Year.

When voting for the NSWRL NSW Cup ‘player of the year’ went behind close doors Josh Davis was leading the votes by 2 points. Good luck Josh.
NSW Cup Team of the Year Announced!

David Harris – second row.   Honourable mention Gus Aiga – wing.  Leo Epifania was in the mix for coach of the year.  Well deserved men!
NSW Cup players’ player medallions.  (# Players vote for these awards.)
R01 Puna Rasaubale/Rocky Trimarchi
R14 Mitch Achurch/Gus Aiga
R02 Gus Aiga
R15 Gus Aiga/Amanono Tovio
R03 No selection
R16 Gus Aiga
R04 Troy O’Sullivan
R05 Josh Davis/Josh Toole
R18 Amanono Tovio
R19 David Harris/Amanono Tovio
R07 Troy O’Sullivan/David Fifita
R20 Mitch Achurch
R08 Troy O’Sullivan
R21 Mitch Achurch
R09 Lance Siataga
R22 Soni Paasi
R10 Troy O’Sullivan
R23 Josh Davis/Mark Russell
R11 Vaha Pulu
R25 Vaha Pulu
R12 David Harris/Josh Davis
R26 Mitch Achurch
R13 Josh Davis/Troy O’Sullivan
Most points Rhys Lenarduzzi 62 (3T 25G) David Fifita 58 (2T 25G)
Most tries Andrew Everingham & Vaha Pulu 10T.  Most games Troy O’Sullivan & Gus Aiga played all 23 games.

SG Ball.
Jason Williams, Head Coach and Stan Presdee, Assistant Coach. Mark Nicholls, Levih Warby, Matt Hall, Col Harris, Allan Pham and the Reverend Tony Gibson. For and against record - 368 points for and 128 against. They had an outstanding season finishing as minor premiers, but with the sudden death system in place, their season ended when defeated in the first week of the semi finals.
Presentation Night Award Winners

Best and Fairest – James Tedesco.  Coach’s Award – David Nofoaluma
Australian Schoolboy’s and Wests Tigers NYC 20’s.

David Nofoaluma was selected in Australian Schoolboys to tour NZ. Since finalising their commitments with our SG Ball team, David Nofoaluma and James Tedesco have cemented positions in the starting line up for Wests Tigers 20’s.
Other noteworthy achievements.

Highest point scorer in the SG Ball competition.  Mitchell Brassington (Captain)

2T and 60G for a total of 128 points. James Tedesco 12T and David Nofoaluma 11T.  2nd & 3rd highest in competition.

Harold Matthews.
Ben Rogers, Head Coach and John McPherson, Assistant Coach. John Shaw, Warren Hall, Michael White and Adem Baskonyali.  For and against record -168 points for and 128 against. The boys also enjoyed a very good season, but with the same system in place, they were knocked out of the finals in the first week.
Presentation Night Award Winners

Best and Fairest – Maliko Filino.  Coach’s Award – Tom Harris
Other noteworthy achievements.

5T to Arthur Currie, 4T each to Maliko Filino, Paul Vaai, Sinapati Solio, and 3T to Mitchell Gough. Top point scorers Matt Harris (Captain) 24 points 1T and 10G and Mason Cerruto 18 points 2T and 5G.

17 Development.
George Zahra, Head Coach, Paul Mamo, Assistant Coach/Skills Coach.  Shane Sultana, Jim Sell and Warren Nichol.  The team played in the Albion Park Gala Day against Wests Wollongong and Canterbury Bulldogs. Over the Easter weekend, they traveled to Nyngan to compete in a carnival hosted by the Far West Academy.   These boys acquitted themselves very well in all games.

Junior Magpies Program.
Made up of local boys aged 13, 14 and 15 years.  (2 teams in each age group.)  They play against Penrith, Balmain, Group 6 and South Sydney.  Mr Ben Rogers, Wests Tigers Coaching and Development Manager coordinated this program.
Other important people.

Every Wests Magpies member, volunteer and supporter. Archives James Mc Whinnie, Alma Mc Whinnie and Craig Woodley. Club Photographer Grant Guy. Local Media Vera Bertola Cumberland Newspapers, Paul Haigh Fairfax Media, C91.3FM and Graeme Syznall. NSW Rugby League Bob Saunders, Jo Farr, Brad Preston, Greg Nichols and Dave Norman. Wests Tigers Messer’s Stephen Humphries, Tim Sheens, Grant Jones, Warren Mc Donnell, Ben Rogers and their media, accounts, medical, support and reception staff.
I personally thank Wests Ashfields Board of Directors and Senior Management for making their senior staff available to look after our Clubs finance’s and membership renewals. It would be remiss not to mention the support shown by Andy Timbs, Simon Cook, Peter Hardgrove, Angela Mc Donald, Chris Schubert, Lina Pruscino, Adam Follett and their wonderful catering and reception staff.

Yours in sport,

Stephen Reeves

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Magpie legend Keith Holman Dead

Posted ImageAustralian and Magpie Rugby League Legend Keith 'Yappy' Holman passed away last night. He is survived by his wife Hazel. Keith was 84 years of age. A one club man (Western Suburbs Magpies 1948-61), 33 NSW games, 35 Tests/World Cup's for the Australian Kangaroos, Test & Grand Final Referee as well as being a 1st Grade Coach. May one of the Greatest Magpies of all Rest In Peace.

He was only 5 feet 6 inches tall, but Keith Holman was a tenacious rugby league halfback that changed the game.

Born in Ballarat on September 11, 1927, Holman was raised in La Perouse as an orphan and attended De La Salle College in Surry Hills. He played football early in his childhood, but it wasn't until he moved to western NSW at the end of the war that playing football professionally became an option. “I was a cook in the Air Force and at the end of the war I was posted to Dubbo,” Holman said. “I played football with the local CYMS footy and was brought to Sydney by a fella that played for Western Suburbs at the time by the name of Eric Bennett,” he said

Holman was dubbed “Yappy” throughout his career after questioning a referee during a game. “A man named Darcy Lawler said: 'yappy shut your mouth'. I guess it stuck,” Holman said.

Holman's dedication to rugby league saw him play 13 seasons for the Magpies and 32 tests for Australia. But one game stands out. “The highlight was winning the Ashes against England in 1950 for the first time in 32 years,” he said. “It was my first test series.”

Holman continued to pursue his love for rugby league as a coach, referee and selector. “I never had much trouble refereeing,” he said. “If they had've been abusive, they would have been off the field and on the bench.
“There were only a few times I had to run past and tell them to keep their bloody hands down or they'll go. They respected me so after I spoke to them once, they didn't do it again.”

But at the end of a game between Canterbury and Manly at Belmore Oval, Holman and his family had to be accompanied to their car by police.

“I was refereeing the game and I gave a penalty against Canterbury in the last few minutes which made them lose,” he said. “One of the girlfriends's of a Canterbury player waited outside the referee's room for me and was making threats. So my wife, Hazel called the police and we were escorted to the car and through the gates.”

When Holman retired in 1961, his career in rugby league was commemorated with a testimonial day at the Sydney Cricket Ground. While great players are often recognised with testimonial dinners, Holman was the only rugby league player to have ever had a testimonial day.

He was acknowledged during his career for the way he changed the nature of scrumhalf play and the accolades continued long into his retirement.

He was named in several historical teams including both the West Tigers and Western Suburbs Magpies Team of the Century and in the 1970s The Holman JFLFC - a junior Rugby League club was established.
Holman also received a MBE Medal in 1977 and was honoured with an award for his 50 years of continued service to Rugby League in Australia.

In February 2008, he was named in the list of Australia's 100 Greatest Players (1908–2007), which was commissioned by the NRL and ARL to celebrate the code's centenary year in Australia. Seventeen players from the list were placed into the Team of the Century and while Andrew Johns beat Holman for the halfback position, Holman said he was lucky to be included in the top 100. “It's a great honour. Just a great honour to be chosen and named on the list,” he said at the time.

Holman is survived by his wife, Hazel, of 60 years, their three children Christine, Susan and Neale, 8 grandchildren and one great grandchild. Funeral announcements are expected to be made soon.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Chris Lawrence selected in Kangaroos Four Nation Squad

Magpie junior Chris Lawrence and his Wests Tigers team mates Robbie Farah and Keith Galloway, have been selected in the Kangaroos Four Nations Squad.

Farah, Lawrence and Galloway are part of a 24 man squad named by the Australian Rugby League for the Four Nations tournament in the United Kingdom.
Rising young Wests Tigers prop Aaron Woods was named in the train-on squad but missed final selection. It was a great reward for a superb season, culminating in Woods winning the Wests Tigers Rookie of the Year Award on Friday.
Wests Tigers Head Coach Tim Sheens is the Kangaroos Coach.
Farah and Lawrence played Test matches for Australia at the end of last season.
Galloway’s selection - his first for Australia - comes on top of his superb season for the Wests Tigers which saw him represent NSW for the first time. He was also named the Wests Tigers Forward of the Year on Friday.
Wests Tigers will also be represented in the Four Nations by New Zealand Captain Benji Marshall and by Gareth Ellis and Chris Heighington for England.
Australian squad
Darren Lockyer © (Brisbane Broncos)
Corey Parker (Brisbane Broncos)
Sam Thaiday (Brisbane Broncos)
Jharal Yow Yeh (Brisbane Broncos)
David Shillington (Canberra Raiders)
Paul Gallen (Cronulla Sharks)
Daly Cherry-Evans (Manly Sea Eagles)
Brett Stewart (Manly Sea Eagles)
Glenn Stewart (Manly Sea Eagles)
Anthony Watmough (Manly Sea Eagles)
Tony Williams (Manly Sea Eagles)
Cooper Cronk (Melbourne Storm)
Billy Slater (Melbourne Storm)
Cameron Smith (Melbourne Storm)
Akuila Uate (Newcastle Knights)
Matt Scott (North Qld Cowboys)
Johnathan Thurston (North Qld Cowboys)
Luke Lewis (Penrith Panthers)
Darius Boyd (St George Illawarra Dragons)
Greg Inglis (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
David Taylor (South Sydney Rabbitohs)
Keith Galloway (Wests Tigers)
Robbie Farah (Wests Tigers)
Chris Lawrence (Wests Tigers)
The Kangaroos team to play New Zealand in Newcastle on Sunday, October 16 will be announced on Friday, October 7, with the team to be assembled in Newcastle on Sunday evening, October 9.
The Kangaroos will travel to the United Kingdom on Friday, October 21.
Gillette Four Nations Schedule (UK Time)
Friday, Oct 28: Australia v New Zealand (20.00hrs); Halliwell Jones Stadium, Warrington.
Saturday, Oct 29: England v Wales (14.30hrs); Leigh Sports Village, Leigh.
Saturday, Nov 5: Wales v New Zealand (13.00hrs); Wembley Stadium, London.
Saturday, Nov 5: England v Australia (15.30hrs) Wembley Stadium, London.
Saturday, Nov 12: England v New Zealand (18.00hrs), KC Stadium, Hull
Sunday, Nov 13:Wales v Australia (17.45hrs), Racecourse Ground, Wrexham.
Saturday, Nov 19: Four Nations Final (18.00hrs), Elland Road, Leeds

Magpie Junior, Matt Groat selected for Young Kangaroos

Wests Tigers players Matt Groat and Jacob Miller have today been selected in the ARL Junior Kangaroos side to play in Newcastle on Sunday, October 16.
The Junior Kangaroos will play the New Zealand Junior Kiwis in Newcastle in the preliminary game to the Australia V New Zealand Test Match at Ausgrid Stadium, Newcastle.
The selection of Groat and Miller in the 18 man squad caps off a fine season with both making their NRL debuts after starting the season in the U20s.
Groat played 10 NRL matches after making his debut against the Dragons at WIN Jubilee Oval in round 12, establishing himself as a young prop with plenty of raw potential.
Miller played 4 NRL matches after making his debut against former club Sydney Roosters at the SFS in round 4.
The talented playmaker was one of the major driving forces in Wests Tigers making the U20s finals. Miller will be pushing hard for the first grade half-back position next season.
2011 ARL Junior Kangaroos Squad:
Kurt Baptiste (Brisbane Broncos)
Dane Gagai (Brisbane Broncos)
Nathan Massey (Canberra Raiders)
Dale Finucane (Canterbury- Bankstown Bulldogs)
Josh Jackson (Canterbury- Bankstown Bulldogs)
Stewart Mills (Cronulla Sharks)
Chad Townsend (Cronulla Sharks)
Tyrone Roberts (Newcastle Knights)
Kyle Feldt (North Queensland Cowboys)
Moses Pangai (North Queensland Cowboys)
Jack De Belin (St George- Illawarra Dragons)
Alex McKinnon (St George – Illawarra Dragons)
Boyd Cordner (Sydney Roosters)
Kane Evans (Sydney Roosters)
Ethan Lowe (Sydney Roosters)
Tautau Moga (Sydney Roosters)
Matthew Groat (Wests Tigers)
Jacob Miller (Wests Tigers)

5/10/2011 12:21:44 PM

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Bulldogs win 2011 NSW Cup

A try on the siren by Jonathan Wright has secured the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs their third straight NSW Cup title, triumphing 30 points to 28 over the Auckland Vulcans in the Grand Final at ANZ Stadium.
The Bulldogs led by eight points twice in the second half only to surrender both leads, with a Vulcans try in the 75th minute to Ivan Penehe seeing them hit the lead 28-26.

With their backs to the wall the Bulldogs secured a turnover 25 metres from the Vulcans line with 60 seconds on the clock, and sending the ball from side to side they found Wright, who jinked off his right foot to score the match winner as the siren sounded.

The try secured the result, seeing captain Trent Cutler lifting the NSW Cup trophy for the Club for a third straight year.
It was also a fitting way for Bulldogs Michael Hodgson, Chris Armit, Brad Morrin, Ben Roberts, Michael Lett, Nathan Smith, Gary Warburton and Junior Tia-Kilifi to bring down the curtain on their careers with the Club.

Unbelievably, the Premiership win is the first title ever – senior or junior – for Hodgson, coming on the final day of a career that has seen him play 204 NRL matches across 14 seasons.

The Bulldogs gave their supporters plenty of confidence early, with Cutler twisting his way out of the tackle to score wide out in the second minute after starting the game with a repeat set on the Vulcans line.

However they soon threw the lead away, with a Smith grubber bouncing into the arms of the Vulcans defence in a movement that would eventually end 30 metres from the Dogs line.

At the end of the set Auckland winger Willie Peace touched down off a cross field kick from half Pita Godinet, the try awarded by referee Jon Stone despite replays showing Peace had knocked on in grounding the ball.
Three minutes later another wayward Bulldogs kick resulted in points to the Vulcans, with a Ben Roberts grubber 10 metres out swopped upon by Glen Fisiiahi on his tryline.

Spotting no one home at fullback for the Dogs, Fisiiahi hit the afterburners to score a 100 metre special, leaving Brett Seymour with the easiest of conversions to put the Vulcans out to a 12-4 lead after as many minutes.

The half levelled out from there and despite the Vulcans dominating in terms of field position, the Dogs were the only ones to score in the final 30 minutes of the term as both sides pushed passes in the search for a strike.
In the end it was a relatively simple try, Jonathan Wright standing up the defence on play one from a scrum to race away to score in the 25th minute, reducing the gap to two at 12-10.

The Bulldogs were denied a try just before the break, Bryson Goodwin not getting the same kind of benefit of his opponents when he was ruled to have knocked on over the line in the 39th minute.

However soon after the break the Dogs got their noses back in front off a scintillating Michael Lett break, the winger in turn feeding to Nathan Smith, who handed hooker Joel Romelo a clear run to score under the posts.
Marty Taupau was then denied a clear try when he reached out to score in the corner, only to be denied by the touch judge’s flag despite replays showing he’d remained in the field of play.

It could have proven costly for the Dogs given the events yet to transpire.

Lett was quickly becoming the star of the show for the Dogs, touching down for his side’s fourth try 13 minutes into the half, stretching their lead to 20-12.

But things soured on the hour when he attempted to shadow a grubber kick into touch in goal, allowing Peace to sneak under his guard to score his second and give the Vulcans life at 20-18.

He’d redeem himself with a try 14 minutes from time, in what appeared to all but seal the result for the Minor Premiers.

However the Vulcans came hard at the Bulldogs in the final ten, with Godinet sneaking over from dummy half eight minutes from time to narrow the gap to two points.

The Bulldogs responded by putting the kick off into touch on the full, and at the end of the set Penehe crossed to put the Vulcans back into the lead at 28-26.

Once again it was Lett the focus as the match entered its final minutes, the winger securing a vital turnover with a strip 25 metres from the Vulcans line.

At the end of the play, Wright got his second and the Bulldogs were celebrating their third straight title at NSW Cup level.


Bulldogs 30: Jonathan Wright 2, Michael Lett 2, Trent Cutler, Joel Romelo tries; Bryson Goodwin 3 goals from 5 attempts; Brad Morrin 0 from 1.

Auckland Vulcans 28: Willie Peace 2, Glen Fisiiahi, Pita Godinet, Ivan Pehehe tries; Brett Seymour 4 goals from 5 attempts.

At ANZ Stadium

Australia v New Zealand @ Newcastle

Come and watch Australia play New Zealand at Ausgrid Stadium.

The new-look Ausgrid Stadium in Newcastle will host an end-of-season Test between Australia and New Zealand on October 16 in an exciting prelude to the 2011 Four Nations tournament in the United Kingdom.

The match will be the first time the VB Kangaroos play in Newcastle for 7 years, in what is certain to be a fiercely contested battle.


The Australian Rugby League is pleased to announce the following 24 players have today been selected to represent the VB Kangaroos in the 2011 Four Nations tournament to be held in the United Kingdom.

Player Club
Darren Lockyer © Brisbane Broncos
Corey Parker Brisbane Broncos
Sam Thaiday Brisbane Broncos
Jharal Yow Yeh Brisbane Broncos
David Shillington Canberra Raiders
Paul Gallen Cronulla Sharks
Daly Cherry-Evans Manly Sea Eagles
Brett Stewart Manly Sea Eagles
Glenn Stewart Manly Sea Eagles
Anthony Watmough Manly Sea Eagles
Tony Williams Manly Sea Eagles
Cooper Cronk Melbourne Storm
Billy Slater Melbourne Storm
Cameron Smith Melbourne Storm
Akuila Uate Newcastle Knights
Matt Scott North Qld Cowboys
Johnathan Thurston North Qld Cowboys
Luke Lewis Penrith Panthers
Darius Boyd St George Illawarra Dragons
Greg Inglis South Sydney Rabbitohs
David Taylor South Sydney Rabbitohs
Keith Galloway Wests Tigers
Robbie Farah Wests Tigers
Chris Lawrence Wests Tigers

Please note, the VB Kangaroos team to play New Zealand in Newcastle on October 16 will be announced on Friday, October 7, with the team to be assembled in Newcastle on Sunday evening, October 9.

Kangaroos vs. Kiwis 

Sun 16 October 2011 Ausgrid Stadium, Newcastle

1:15PM: Gates Open
1:45PM:Pre-Match Kick Off - Junior Kangaroos vs Junior Kiwis
4:00PM: Kick Off - Test Match

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Magpies Fly home in Relay

Congratulations to members of the Western Suburbs magpies Under 16's who won the Holiday Inn Relay race which was held during the half time break of the NSW Cup Grand Final last sunday at ANZ Stadium. There were 6 runners who each ran 100 metres and they beat home a strong field of runners from other clubs. The 6 runners for the magpies were -

Mason Cerruto
Makaere Bush
Tom Harris
Max Saolotoga
David Green
Christian Tulua

Again, congratulations boys

Saturday, October 1, 2011

NSW Cup Team of the Year 2011

The NSW Cup team of 2011 has been announced and it includes local Campbelltown junior David Harris in the second row.

Also an "honourable mention" went to Gus Aiga as one of the wingers and former magpies Nathan Waters as half back and Dean Collis as centre ( note that all are Campbelltown juniors)

Former magpie junior Ben Roberts was five-eighth of the year ( geez, how many local juniors is that, I'm loosing count ).

Finally for coach, Leo Epifania got the "dead-set unlucky" award behind the winner, Richie Blackmore

Below is what was said about David Harris

"Harris is a workhorse and with no disrespect meant to the Western Suburbs Magpies club, I would be confident in saying that if he were playing for a club in the top four that he would be much better known. "