The same weekend of the passing of Ron Barassi, St Kilda lost champion Kevin Neale at the age of 78. A contemporary of Barassi, he was one of the heroes of their 1966 premiership, played 256 games and ranks eleventh on the Saints games list. He had been suffering from Alzheimer's for some years. After his retirement, he worked in the club's marketing department and waw president of the Past Players Association.
The club hailed him as a "larger than life character and said in a statement, "Cowboy was truly a beloved figure at the Saints, not only among his teammates and fans, but by those who worked alongside him at the club long after his playing days, Renowned for his great physical strength as a footballer, he was also blessed with exceptional skills for a big man which enabled him to play as either a key defender or forward. Truly a larger-than-life character in every way, Cowboy was always able to engage with people across various generations ...". Named in a back pocket in St Kilda's Team of the Century, Neale will always hold a special place in the hearts of Saints' fans, having booted five goals in their only Grand Final win to lead the side to a one-point victory against Collingwood. He was also captain- coach of Ainslie in the ACT and led them to four premierships.
Article last changed on Sunday, September 24, 2023 - 11:41 AM EDT