Just ahead of Round 12, the AFL held their annual Hall of Fame induction ceremonies. Three were honored posthumously - the late Trevor Barker, the late Jim Deane and the late Ron Evans. The other three were Brad Hardie, Mick Malthouse and Ken Hunter.
St Kilda 1975-1989
Best & Fairest 1976 and 1981
Played six games for Victoria
Sandringham coach (VFL) 1992-1994, taking the team to premierships in 1992 and 1994
St Kilda Hall of Fame and Team of the 20th Century
Barker was a hugely talented and much loved and respected player with the Saints. He had offers to go elsewhere but, despite their lack of success, stayed with the Saints such was his love of the club and sense of loyalty. In an old TV interview, which was aired at the ceremonies as part of a tribute to Barker, he said, "If I had left, I would’ve lost identity at another club. It’s always nice to go home to a place you know you’re welcome at.” His mother Norma, 91, was present to accept the award for her late son. Another video tribute featured former teammate Danny Frawley. In the video, a teary-eyed Frawley said, “It’s a great day for the Barker family and a great day for the Saints family.” Frawley recounted a story of how Barker in 1981 donated his car back to a club sponsor so it could be raffled off to ensure his teammates could get paid as the club was in dire financial straits.
Prior to the event, Norma was interviewed at her home by journalist Mark Robinson. At one point during the interview, Norma picked up an old St Kilda jersey with Trevor's number 1 on the back. Tears spilled as she put held it to her face, saying she could still smell him. She later pulled it on during the interview. She also revealed how they had lost Trevor's sister when she was only five years old due to a congenital heart condition, passing away two weeks after surgery. She said Trevor never got over the loss.
Dual Brownlow Medalist and St Kilda champion Robert Harvey, who introduced the induction said Barker’s passing (from Cancer in 1996, aged 39) was “one of the saddest days in St Kilda ... history. Never have I played with a guy who radiated passion and loyalty for his club like (Barker). He was renowned for his high marking (catching the ball), his blonde locks and often his lifestyle off the field. He was a true St Kilda champion.”
Former Saint Nathan Burke tweeted, "The great man Trevor Barker finally in AFLHoF. Walking in as a 16 yr old he was the club legend and the first man to come up and welcome me. Everything I learned about loyalty, treating our fans and loving St K came from his example."
Western Bulldogs Coach Luke Beveridge briefly worked with Barker when Barker was coaching at St Kilda, but said his best memories were watching Barker play, ”He was a brilliant and hard tackler … but then you had the other extreme ... like the high marks, unbelievable skills - he was so clean ... He just had everything ... the ability to run and the courage ... he was the complete player. One of the most rounded, respected, hardest, talented, devoted, loyal players in the game.”
Barker’s long-time manager Jeff Joseph spoke on behalf of the Barker family, “On behalf of Trevor’s mum, Norma ... Trevor’s late father Jack, who would’ve loved to have been here tonight, and also Melinda, Trevor’s partner for so many years, I again would like to say thank you on their behalf and on behalf of all the fraternity that loved Trevor ... if Trevor was here .. he would’ve made one hell of a party of it.”
One caller to SEN Radio's Overnight Crowd spoke of Barker's high-flying marks (catch of the ball in the air) saying he would go where angels feared to tread such was his courage.Former Saints champion Nick Riewoldt, now a match commentator on TV, said everyone still could sense Barker's presence at the club.
Played 157 games and kicked 95 goals for South Adelaide 1945-1953 and 1956-1957
Played 33 games and kicked 17 goals for the Richmond Tigers 1954-1955
Played 14 games for South Australia
Playing coach of South Adelaide 1951-1953
Non-playing coach of South Adelaide 1970-1971
Captain of South Adelaide 1951-1953 and 1956-1957
Magarey Medalist (SANFL player of the year): 1953 and 1957
South Adelaide Best & Fairest: 1948-1949, 1951, 1953, 1956-1957
Deane's son Michael accepted his father's award and spoke admiringly of his dad who died in 2010 aged 82, "He enjoyed every chance to play with the greats of South Australian football in the 1950s ... with whom he became good friends away from football. It is sad he is not here for this moment ... But he would have been celebrating it as much as all his other success in a game he loved. He never played a final with South Adelaide, but he took solace from his state games. "
He was described as a fierce competitor who perfected the stab pass on his left foot South Australian great and Hall of Famer Neil Kerley said of Deane, "A super courageous player ... tough as nails ... a deadly stab kick with his left foot. Sadly, he played at a bottom club and was carrying so much on his shoulders. The only way for those outside SA to understand how good was Jimmy is to make the comparison with Bobby Skilton. And it fits.” Deane finished his playing career as a star in Victoria's strong Ovens and Murray League as well as being based in Port Pirie while playing in the Spencer Gulf League.
RON EVANS (ADMINISTRATOR) - the award was accepted by his widow
Played 64 games and kicked 210 goals for Essendon 1958-1962
Played 60 games and kicked 271 goals for West Perth 1963-1965
Essendon leading goal kicker 1958-1960
Coleman Medalist 1959-1960 leading league goal kicker)
third youngest player behind Collingwood's Dick Lee (1907) and North Melbourne's John Longmire (1990) to win the award
West Perth leading goal kicker 1963-1965
WAFL leading goal kicker 1963
Played five games for Victoria 1959-1960 and five games for West Australia 1959-1960
Essendon board member 1978-1992 and board president 1988-1992
AFL Commissioner 1993-2006 and Commission chairman 1998-2006
A lanky and talented forward, he once kicked 10 of Essendon's 16 goals against Hawthorn and booted nine on debut for Victoria at the MCG against West Australia. After his stint with West Perth and retiring at the age of 26, he earned an MBA and joined Essendon's board. He oversaw the move of Eseendon's home games at the MCG. He was a successful businessman as well, becoming managing director of catering company Spotless. He then joined the AFL Commission where he oversaw many initiatives to drag the AFL into the 21st century.
Speaking to the AFL web site ahead of the ceremonies, former AFL boss Andrew Demetriou said of Evans, "Ron served the game with the highest integrity, the highest decency and at all times in the most selfless man .. I've ever come across in football. It was always about the game, the clubs and the supporters, never about himself. He had a profound impact on the growth of the game." Former tea..mate Ken Fraser said Evans had ""a disarming charm but a steely resolve". Demetriou elaborated, saying those traits were in evidence in the boardroom, "Ron commanded a significant presence ... when we dealt with politicians, corporate partners, broadcast partners. Ron was respected. He was admired ... when he spoke people listened … I don't think I was ever in a situation with Ron where he raised his voice, ... It just wasn't his style. He was very, very determined and forceful in a very calm way."
AFL initiatives under Ron Evans:
Construction of Colonial Stadium (now Marvel Stadium)
Upgrading facilities at the MCG
Allocating special financial assistance to struggling clubs
Establishing policies for racial and religious vilification, illicit drug use, and respect towards women
Forming closer links with the AFL Players Association
Starting programs to help Aboriginal communities.
Prior to his passing in 2007 after a brief battle with cancer, Evans was made a Member of the Order of Australia for services to business and football. The annual AFL Rising Star award is named in his honor.
Played 140 games and kicked 308 goals for South Fremantle: 1979-1984
Played 150 games and kicked 222 goals for Footscray (Western Bulldogs), Brisbane & Collingwood 1985-1992
Brownlow Medalist 1985
South Fremantle Best & Fairest 1982
Tassie Medal 1984, 1986 (best overall player during the Australian Football Carnival games held 1937-1986)
Simpson Medal 1984, 1986 (best ground fot West Australia in State or Origin games)
South Fremantle captain 1984
South Fremantle leading goal kicker 1984 (equal)
Brisbane leading goal kicker 1989-1990
All-Australian 1984 and 1986
Nine games for West Australia 1984-1988 and one game for Queensland 1991
A backyard accident with a can of gasoline left him with severe burns over much of his body when he was a teenager. He spent months in the hospital undergoing numerous skin grafts. Doctors told him he would never be able to play sports but he proved them wrong.
Played 99 games and kicked 23 goals for Claremont (WAFL) 1975-1980
Played 147 games and kicked 160 goals for Carlton 1981-1989
Premierships 1981, 1982 and 1987
Carlton Best and Fairest 1981
Carlton leading goal kicker 1983
All-Australian: 1979, 1980, 1982 and 1983
He was 6' tall but just 167 pounds. North Melbourne was interested but thought he would be too frail for football. Richmond was also interested but a club official made a snide remark about not "chasing half back flankers". Primarily a defender, he could also play midfield and in the forward line. Later was a club director.
Played 53 games for St Kilda, kicking 5 goals: 1972-1976
Played 121 games for Richmond, kicking 10 goal: 1976-1982
Footscray coach 1984-1988
West Coast coach 1984-1989, taking the team to premierships 1992 and 1994
Collingwood coach 2000-2011, taking the team to the 2010 premiership
Carlton coach 2013-15
Australia coach for 4 games 2008 and 2010
All-Australian coach 1991, 2010
Jock McHale Medalist 1992, 1994, 2010 premiership medal
Mick Malthouse broke Jock McHale's coaching record in his last season with Carlton. McHale coached Collingwood for 714 games. Mick surpassed that record with 718 games to his name
The Australian Football Hall of Fame was established in 1996 and serves to recognize players, coaches, umpires, administrators, and media representatives who have made an outstanding contribution to Australian football.
Source: Nadine Rabah. AFL Media Release, foxsports.com.au, portpirierecorder.com.au, AFL Record Season Guide, Encyclopedia of League Footballers, SEN live broadcast of awards ceremony, SEN (audio)
Article last changed on Sunday, June 09, 2019 - 2:32 PM EDT