2005 Legendary Team – Scottsdale Team of 1973

The captain-coach of Scottsdale’s 1973 team, Bob Wilson, said:

“The 1973 premiership season was a tremendous achievement for Scottsdale and the north-east football community. The ability of club president Gordon Dilworth to mobilise the community behind the team’s finals campaign ensured that we were able to fly by aeroplane to games at North Hobart and West Park. Scottsdale Football Club was an innovator ahead of its time and this ensured that the club was able to win the state final for the first time and represent Tasmania at the National Club Championship against the likes of Subiaco, Glenelg and Richmond. Quite a feat for a town of 3,000 people!”


> Following their victory in the state final, Scottsdale represented Tasmania in the National Club Championship of 1973 conducted in Adelaide. Scottsdale played against Glenelg and Subiaco, losing to the latter by 30 points. Richmond, the VFL premier, won the Championship final by 13 points over Subiaco. Scottsdale’s involvement in the competition is meritorious as the town itself had a population of around 3,000 people at the time.

> Scottsdale won their only Tasmanian state premiership after defeating Hobart in the preliminary final at North Hobart Oval and then Cooee in the final at West Park. The fact that Scottsdale won two away games to secure the premiership is meritorious. Also, Scottsdale showed great innovation during the season by transporting the team by plane to both finals. This was a response to the challenge presented by significant travel distances and the previous poor results by Scottsdale in the state final series of games (having lost the 1964, 1965, 1968, 1970 and 1971 series after winning the NTFA premiership).

> A highlight of Scottsdale’s state final victory was their comeback from 32 points down at three-quarter time to win by 11 points. This is the greatest last quarter comeback in the history of Tasmanian state premierships.

> The team that Scottsdale defeated, Cooee, was full of high quality players and included seven players who had/would play VFL senior football. These included Cooee captain-coach Vern Drake, Hugh Strahan, Peter Pettigrew, Graeme Shepherd, Stephen Beaumont, Greg Towns and Athol Hodgetts. A further two players, Darryl Shepherd and Tom Lee, also played for Tasmania. The Cooee team had to defeat Latrobe, winners of the previous four premierships, to annex the NWFU premiership.

> Scottsdale won the NTFA premiership after defeating North Launceston in the second semi final and a brutal grand final and being undefeated throughout the 20 game roster. They played one draw. The NTFA finals series were played at York Park, the home ground of North Launceston.

> The Scottsdale team included nine players who had/would represent Tasmania, including: Max Hadley, Ricky Rattray, Rodney Hughes, Jim Leitch, Stephen Nicholls, Greg Lethborg, Danny Hall, Ron Hall and captain-coach Bob Wilson.

> Other players that represented Scottsdale in the finals series were: Billy Burns, Ken Hall, Graeme Millwood, Malcolm Crichton, John Williams, Sonny Gillies, Leon Ranson and Terry Taylor.

Other achievements of the team:

> All Australian: Jim Leitch.

> Past or future VFL players: Kevin Egan, Jim Leitch, Rodney Hughes, Tad Joniec and Bob Wilson.

> Hec Smith Medallists: Max Hadley, Ricky Rattray and Stephen Nicholls.

> Leading NTFA goalkicker: Max Hadley.

> NTFA games record holders: Ken Lette and Greg Lethborg.

> Multiple club premiership players: Stephen Nichols (8), Ken Lette (7) and Greg Lethborg (7).

Scottsdale’s Finals Campaign, 1973
NTFA Regional Grand Final Date: 15 September

Scottsdale: 1.3 5.6 9.9 11.12 (78)
North L’ton: 1.2 4.5 10.6 10.7 (67)
Venue: York Park
Umpire: G. Alderson
Attendance: 8,727
Gate: $6,604

Scottsdale: G. Millwood, R. Hughes, K. Egan, J. Leitch, K. Hall, D. Hall, T. Taylor, G. Lethborg
North L’ton: D. Reid, K. Sanders, P. Warren, G. Murden, K. Radford, R. Spencer, N. Maynard, P. Sellers
Scottsdale: M. Hadley (4), B. Burns (2), R. Hughes, T. Taylor, R. Rattray, D. Hall, T. Joniec
North L’ton: R. Spencer (3), D. Frost (2), I. Von Schill, S. Sellers, T. Pickett, K. Sanders, K. Radford

State Preliminary Final Date: 22 September

Scottsdale 2.3 6.7 8.10 14.15 (99)
Hobart 1.1 3.2 3.3 6.4 (40)
Venue: North Hobart Oval
Umpire: G. Alderson
Attendance: 9,485
Gate: $7,102

Scottsdale: S. Nicholls, D. Hall, K. Hall, K. Egan, R. Hughes, J. Leitch
Hobart: P. Ratcliffe, P. Martyn, K. Williams, K. Luxmoore, P. Reid
Scottsdale: S. Nicholls (3), M. Hadley (3), B. Burns (2), R. Rattray, K. Egan, R. Hughes, K. Lette, T. Taylor, K. Hall
Hobart: S. Gay (2), D. Watkins, K. Wilson, M. Dickson, J. Howard

State Grand Final Date: 29 September

Scottsdale 6.5 8.9 10.11 16.20 (116)
Cooee 5.1 11.8 15.13 15.15 (105)
Venue: West Park
Umpire: R. Barling
Attendance: 8,269
Gate: $6,515

Scottsdale: S. Nicholls, G. Lethborg, R. Hall, B. Burns, R. Hughes, M. Crichton
Cooee: G. White, K. Beswick, G. Towns, V. Drake, W. McCarthy, T. Lee, G. Shephard
Scottsdale: S. Nicholls (5), K. Lette (3), B. Burns (2), M. Hadley (2), R. Rattray, S. Gillies, R. Hall, G. Lethborg
Cooee: S. Beaumont (3), A. Hodgetts (3), G. Towns (3), V. Drake (2), D. French (2), P. Pettigrew, R. Deayton

State Final Teams

B: J. Williams D. Hall R. Hall
HB: G. Lethborg G. Millwood M. Crichton
C: J. Leitch S. Nichols K. Hall
HF: M. Hadley R. Rattray R. Hughes
F: T. Taylor K. Lette W. Burns
Ruck: T. Joniec R. Wilson K. Egan
Reserves: S. Gillies L. Ranson
Coach: Bob Wilson

B: R. Crawford K. Beswick H. Dowling
HB: D. Shepherd H Strahan K. Button
C: B. Jarvis G. Shepherd G. White
HF: S. Beaumont W. McCarthy G. Towns
F: D. French V. Drake D. Corkey
Ruck: A. Lee A. Hodgetts P. Pettigrew
Reserves: W. Hayes N. McCarthy
Coach: Vern Drake