1970 Premiership – 50 years on.

A group of former Lincoln South players got together in the past week to reminisce 50 years since their back-to-back premiership win in 1970, a year where they also beat a rival from a neighbouring league.

1970 PREMIERS: Together at Lincoln South Football Club on Thursday are (back): Mervin Dennis, Barry Akehurst, Andrew Page, Steven Horne; (front): John Dinnison, Frank Martin, Ralph Glass and Doug Glass.

ORIGINAL STORY IN THE PORT LINCOLN TIMES https://www.portlincolntimes.com.au/story/6910475/eagles-recount-50-years-since-flag/?cs=1626

Unable to hold a major anniversary event due to COVID-19 a group of former Souths players still living in Port Lincoln got together at Lincoln South Football Club on Thursday.

The players got together to reflect on the premiership years of 1969 and 1970, and share stories about their teammates.

Doug Glass was one of the players who attended and said they continued to be involved in football and have seen their children and grand children play through the club.

“We were an awesome team through those years and the guys were so close knit,” he said.

The 1970 Lincoln South team. Pictured are (back): Eliott Bobridge, Kevin Sawyer, Jim Lister, Peter Lukeman, Brian Higgins, Richard Hoare, Mervin Dennis, Phillip Fairclough (vice captain), Adrian Barret, Barry Lunn; middle: Max Horne (coach), Gary Turnbull, Neville Place, Barry Akehurst, Ralph Glass (president), Neville O’Brien (captain), Steven Horne, Frank Martin, Ralph Clarke (manager); front: Andrew Page, John Dinnison, Tim Dyer, Doug Glass, Jeffrey Freer and Brian Wake. Absent: Klaus Wowk.

Lincoln South found plenty of success in the late 1960s and early 1970s, playing in six straight grand finals between 1967 and 1972.

After losing to Tasman by 25 points in 1967 and to Tumby Bay by four points in 1968, Souths defeated Wayback by 21 points to win the 69 premiership and then bested Marble Range by 16 goals in a dominant display.

These two premierships were significant as it was the first, and to date only time Lincoln South had won back-to-back A grade premierships.

The late Max Horne coached Souths to the two premierships and was fondly remembered by the former players.

Barry Akehurst played in the premiership sides and said Mr Horne was a great coach who got the most out of his players.

He said previous coach Maurie Barry, who coached the team to the 1967 grand final, set the standard but Mr Horne, who was originally from Port Neill and had played for Port Adelaide in 1945, brought a lot to the club.

He was very tough, disciplined with an enormous knowledge of the game,” he said.

Andrew Page also played under Horne and said he was the best coach he had ever seen in Port Lincoln with a committed unit playing for him.

“We were a close team, we did everything together,” he said.

“Max had some of the hardest players to coach, some would be out at all hours of the night but when we were out on the footy field, we were 100 per cent behind him.”

The 1970 report on the match in the Port Lincoln Times described the one-sided match, mentioning “barely a minute of the grand final could be called Marble Range’s”.

Port Lincoln Times article on the 1970 Premiership

Klaus Wowk starred for Souths in the ruck with players including Page, Jeffrey Freer and captain Neville O’Brien creating options for the forwards.

Scoring three goals each were Freer, Akehurst, Peter Lukeman, Brian Higgins and vice captain Phillip Fairclough.

Both of these premiership years also saw Lincoln South take on Great Flinders premiers Cummins Ramblers in a “premiers v premiers” match.

Souths president at the time Ralph Glass remembers that there was a great rivalry between Port Lincoln and Great Flinders and Ramblers challenged Souths to a match at Centenary Oval, which Ramblers won by 41 points.

“A vow was made by Lincoln South Football Club players, officials and supporters to win the 1970 Port Lincoln premiership and counter challenge Ramblers for ‘Premier of Premiers’ as we had unfinished business to attend to and a score to settle,” he said.

Souths ambition was fulfilled as they faced Ramblers, this time at Cummins, and emerged victorious.

Neville O’Brien receiving Premiers of Premiers Plate after Defeating Cummins Ramblers in Cummins

Andrew Page remembers Peter Lukeman’s efforts in that game, calling him the best centre half forward in the league.

“He turned up late and was still half-drunk, and kicked eight goals on the best centre half back on Eyre Peninsula, Frankie Bischoff,” he said.

Lukeman was one of the players living away from Port Lincoln and were not able to attend, as were Jim Lister, Richard Hoare, Phil Fairclough, Adrian Barret, Barry Lunn, Tim Dyer, Alan Chapman and Brian Waite.

After the 1970 triumph O’Brien took over as coach, losing to Wayback in the 1971 grand final by 11 points but would rebound to defeat Wayback by 45 points to win the 1972 premiership.

Lincoln South is preparing for a major milestone next year as the club will celebrate its 75th anniversary in 2021, which will be held from September 29 to October 3.

Anyone wanting to find out more is invited to email at lincolnsouthclub@gmail.com or text to 0475 698 078.

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