TWO GOLDEN ERAS
The Sherwood and Western Magpies have enjoyed two Golden Eras—the first by Sherwood in the 1970-80s and the second by the Western Magpies from 2006-2012. Below is the story of Sherwood’s dominance in the SQAFA.
"SHERWOOD WIN EIGHT FLAGS IN A ROW"
The Sherwood Football Club had a golden era from the early 1970s to early 1980s when they won 10 flags in 13 year period from 1970 to 1982, including eight Senior Premierships in a row--a record in all senior Australian Football competitions.
To underline the Magpies golden era the club also won four Reserve grade flags in the same era in the South Queensland Association, which included clubs such as Mt Gravatt, UQ, Army, Wynnum, Ipswich, South Brisbane, Aspley, Teachers and Oakleigh.
At junior level the Magpies were also one of the strongest clubs in South East Queensland.
Throughout most of this era the Magpies great rivals were Mt Gravatt, with Sherwood winning several classic grand finals after being beaten comfortably in semi final matches by the Vultures.
The run commenced shortly after the Senior Club was formed in 1968 to provide the many junior players the club had nurtured a pathway into senior football. All the players were largely home grown throughout this period.
The first flag was won when Sherwood defeated UQ by 10 goals.
The next flag was won in 1973 under the legendary Sherwood coach Maurie McNamee, who pulled several selection masterpieces to reverse an 89 point second semi final defeat by Mt Gravatt to engineer a 4 point Grand Final victory over the Vultures. The victory was led by one of the club greats in key forward Ken Kussulke. Gary Glazebrook won two B & Fs in this period.
After finishing third in 1974, the run of 8 flags in a row commenced in 1975 and ended in 1982, when the club was then included in the QAFL in 1983 after several years of lobbying and with much opposition from existing QAFL clubs. This was the first of its three entries to the QAFL--that's another story!!!
The club appointed legendary North Melbourne centreman and Kangaroo Team of the Century and AFL Hall of Fame inductee (inducted 1996) Les Foote as non-playing coach in 1977. During the season and In the lead up to the finals and then in the semi final Foote had a strategy of continually moving players around, saying this was how the game will be played in the future (ahead of his time). However, it was probably about 40 years ahead of time as the Magpies were defeated by 125 points in the second semi final. The players approached Foote and said they need some stability and he acquiesced and the side went on to have arguably one of the greatest turn-arounds in footy history to defeat Mt Gravatt by 10 points in the decider --club historian Kev Kluver relates that there was a donnybrook in the game that rivalled the infamous Richmond-Essendon brawl at Windy Hill and obviously the Magpies were winners in both contests!!!
Players of note in this era were Ray Smith, who went on to play VFL with Melbourne, Warren Selvage, Ross Stewart, Des Lashman, and Romus Jakavicius, who many rated good enough to play at the top level.
1978 and 1980 saw the club coached by Lindsay Jacob, and he was regarded as a great motivator and people person. Once again Mt Gravatt won the semi final by 5 goals but Sherwood bounced back to win the decider by 8 goals (do we note a trend here!!) The 1979 flag was coached by Colin Kimmorley who had played several matches for Collingwood in the early 1970s.
In 1980 Sherwood were invited to participate in the QAFL pre-season competition against the 8 QAFL clubs and went on to defeat Windsor-Zillmere in the final by 10 goals—this was the beginning of the push to admit Sherwood to the QAFL.
Warren Selvage coached the team to back-to-back flags in 1981 and 1982, with only one loss in 1981 and undefeated Premiers in 1982. In 1981 Sherwood defeated Aspley by 49 points in the Grand Final, after Aspley qualified about 5 Windsor-Zillmere players for the final—Warren Selvage said that made the win even more satisfying. Alan Gifford kicked 8 goals in the Grand Final. In 1982 an undefeated Sherwood defeated Wynnum by 49 points- club legend Bill Pierce won his first B & F in this season and Craig St John was best on ground in the centre in the Grand Final.
Another highlight of the 1982 season was that both Alan Gifford and Gregg Stewart kicked over 100 goals in the home and way season.
The unbelievable run of eight flags in a row came to an end in 1983 when Sherwood joined the QAFL and finished 7th in a 10 team competition, but as said earlier, that is another story!!
The club would like to acknowledge that much of this information has been obtained from "In Black and White--A History of the Sherwood and Western Magpies Football Clubs 1956-2011" written by Tony and Geraldine Massey in 2011--copies still available--a good read.