Tuesday, 3 November 2020

The Mighty Roos

The Campbelltown Kangaroos rugby league club has played a significant part in the lives of many locals. They have been around since 1908 and continue to play in the Group 6 competition. To write a comprehensive history of this club would too much of an undertaking for this blog and considering a history was written in 2008. I thought I would share some of the more interesting facts and stories in point form, using various sources including the excellent centenary publication written by Narelle Cullen and Lorraine Harris.

  • The club was originally known as The Wallabies
  • One of the teams the Kangaroos played against in the early 1920s was called Cordeaux Dam
  • At one memorable game against Fairfield in the mid 1930s club supporter Geoff Gore fired a revolver into the air to stop brawling spectators.
  • A game at Campbelltown saw the local sanitary truck pull into the oval with the truck fully loaded. The driver parked the truck and ran into the change rooms to get into his football gear, played the game and then ran back into the change room to get into his work clothes and continue to work which meant he had to go to empty the truck.
  • The Kangaroos first played at Campbelltown Showground on Warby Street before moving to Alfred Duguid Oval at the northern end of Queen Street. They moved to Orana Park in 1971.
  • A Group 6 representative team coached by Ray Corkery defeated the French touring team 2-0 at Orana Park in 1975 after a power outage caused the floodlights to fail.
  • After being wooden spooners in 1979, Campbelltown City Kangaroos claimed the 1980 premiership with a dominant season in which they lost only two games. They remain the only Group 6 club to have gone from last to first in one season.
  • Ex-Australian Kangaroos and ex-Wests Tigers coach Tim sheens captained the Campbelltown City Kangaroos to a first grade premiership in 1983. This was the Kangaroos last match in Group 6.
  • In the 1930s the club would hold meetings at Alf Duguid's bootmaker and repair shop.
  • In a match at Picton, Kangaroos player Ron New received a serious injury. He passed away a couple of days later from the injury. As a mark of respect to Ron his number 10 jersey has been retired and has not been worn by a senior team member since.
  • The 1972 semi final between fierce rivals Campbelltown Kangaroos and Camden was regarded as one of the greatest matches in the group's history. After both sides hammered each other and with the score at 10 all with little time left, Camden won via a controversial scrum penalty.
  • A supporter named Ray Muggleton using a booming voice would often use a famous catch cry of "COME ON YOU ROOS! GET SOME BLOOD ON YOUR BOOTS! This was yelled out just as the referee would blow his whistle to start the match.

An undated photograph of the Kangaroos football team (Campbelltown and Airds Historical Society)

Sources:

Wikipedia

CULLEN, Narelle and HARRIS, Lorraine
Campbelltown City Kangaroos Rugby League Football Club 100 Years 1908-2008
Campbelltown: Snap Printing



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