Nomads commemorate first decade

By Dave MacLellan
The New England Nomads Australian Football Club is officially ten years old following a celebration ball at the Wicklow Hotel. Saturday night’s ball saw a reunion of players, coaches and officials, past and present, who have served the renowned bottle green strip over the past decade. The Nomads success on field is unrivalled, out of 150 games thus far, there have been 96 wins, two draws and 52 losses. Over the decade the Nomads have won 64 per cent of their games with 221 players contributing to five minor premierships and three flags. The club is now about more than football, with special presentations to two of the most dedicated men to have called Bellevue Oval home.

Brendan Nolan, Ben Page and the Sydney Swans' Jesse White

The first presentation was the retirement of the New England Nomads number 1 jumper in honour of Brendan Nolan. Brendan has spent much of the past decade, when in Australia, assisting the club in all respects possible. He is highly regarded among the playing group because of his advice, encouragement and the dedication of his time to the club.

Ron Crump receiving his life-membership from Ben Page

The second presentation was made to Ron Crump, who became the New England Nomads inaugural life member. Over much of the past decade, Ron has been treasurer, chef, timekeeper, goal umpire, Nomads player, Wanderers player and regularly ran the match day administration and canteen. Ron’s scooter has become a familiar sight at Bellevue Oval, although in his own entertaining reply he noted that he became an AFL footballer because of a lack of competitive volleyball in the region.

The ball was once again well attended, with increased numbers from last year’s inaugural ball and was attended by two future stars of the Sydney Swans, Heath Grundy and Jesse White. Raffles and auctions of memorabilia donated by local businesses and AFL clubs will also provide funds for the future expansion of the New England Nomads and the Nomads Auskick centre.

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