by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago
The 1989 Hawthorn premiership team has been honored by the Sport Australia Hall of Fame, becoming just the third sporting team to receive the award. The Sport Australia Hall of Fame introduced the team award in 2002 after deciding teams as well as individuals should be recognized. Premiership coach Allan Jeans, premiership captain and AFL games record holder Michael Tuck (426 games) and 15 other members of that famous team were present at the awards ceremony.
Coach Allan Jeans was known for exhorting his players to "pay the price" for victory and that's exactly what they did in one of the most bruising games of the modern era. The Hawks were defending their 1988 title against Geelong. Hawk star Dermott Brereton was flattened by Geelong's Mark Yeates at the opening bounce. He had to be helped from the ground by trainers but never got to the bench. Instead, he fought through the pain to return to the field. Suffering a bruised kidney and ribs, he still kicked three goals for the match. Hawk rover John Platten was stretchered off in the first term and, to this day, does not remember the game or receiving his Premiership medal. Robert "Dipper" DiPierdomenico played out most of the game with a punctured lung. By the final term, the Hawks had only a dozen fit players with several, including Platten and Dipper, in the hospital after the game. Against a depleted and tiring Hawthorn, Geelong kicked 8.5 to Hawthorn's 3.5 in the final term, but time ran out and the Hawks were six point victors. As Dipper lay in the hospital afterward, he could sometimes be heard mumbling about "paying the price".
When Brereton refused the coach's instructions to come off after being poleaxed, Jeans sent a one word message out to Dermie, "Inspirational". Another Hawk player commented after the brutal hit on Brereton, "He--'s bells, there are no rules today".
Source: hawthornfc.com.au & author notes
Article last changed on Tuesday, June 10, 2008 - 2:34 AM EDT