Local greats honoured
Friday, 10th May, 2019
By Tyler Hannigan
Two Broken Hill football legends have been named in the greatest NSW team of all time at a function in Sydney yesterday.
Central’s Neil Davies and West’s Bruce McGregor made the cut for New South Wales’ best ever team, revealed at the gala function yesterday.
Davies starred for Glenelg in 143 games across the 1950’s and ‘60’s where he was club captain and a multiple-time best and fairest winner.
He would go on to represent South Australia 20 times and was All-Australian in 1953.
Davies went onto play two games for Richmond before playing and coaching in the Northern Territory with St Mary’s and finished up with Western Districts in Queensland.
McGregor was recruited to play for West Adelaide in 1923 having also been sought after by Norwood and Port Adelaide.
He won back-to-back Magarey Medals in 1926 and 1927.
McGregor went on to play 142 games for the Bloods in three different stints with the club.
He was also a multiple time best and fairest winner while he also spent time at South Adelaide and in Tasmania as captain-coach of North Hobart as well as coaching Glenelg to the 1934 premiership.
Both Davies and McGregor were part of the inaugural inductees into the SANFL hall of fame in 2002.
They were picked alongside a plethora of modern day stars such as Sydney champions Leo Barry, Brett Kirk, Jarryd McVeigh, Kieren Jack and Paul Kelly, Hawthorn’s Luke Breust, Isaac Smith and Shane Crawford, St Kilda’s Lenny Hayes, North Melbourne’s John Longmire and Geelong’s Tom Hawkins.
The all-time legends of the game were well represented with Fitzroy’s Haydn Bunton and North Melbourne premiership skipper Wayne Carey who was named captain of the side.
Kelly and Essendon’s Terry Daniher were selected as joint vice-captains.
Bunton, won three Brownlow Medals with the Lions in the 1930s and three Sandover Medals when he moved to the WAFL to play for Subiaco after he left the VFL, was named as the starting rover.
Four-time premiership coach Allan Jeans - who took St Kilda to its only flag in 1966, and Hawthorn to flags in 1983, ‘86 and ‘89 - was named as the team’s coach, along with former Melbourne coach Neale Daniher.
As well as the team, the top 10 NSW players to never play at the top level were also revealed at the function with Central and North Broken Hill star Wayne Walker among those selected.
Walker’s resume is long and illustrious with over 300 Broken Hill League games, four Middleton Medals, two Mail Medals and nine premierships in a strong era for Broken Hill football as well as countless appearances for SA Country and NSW state team, many as captain.
West’s Vince Gauci and North’s Ray ‘Bubba’ Egan were also considered for the top 10 but ultimately it was Walker’s performances for NSW in 1986 and 1987 that got him the nod.
Greatest NSW team of all time
B: Chris Lethbridge (Sydney YMCA/Fitzroy), Leo Barry (Deniliquin/Sydney), Ross Henshaw (North Albury/North Melbourne)
HB: Jarryd McVeigh (Pennant Hills/Sydney), Gordon Strang (East Albury/Richmond), Dennis Carroll (Albury Tigers/Sydney)
C: Shane Crawford (Finley/Hawthorn), Lenny Hayes (Pennant Hills/St Kilda), Neil Davies (Central Broken Hill/Glenelg)
HF: Terry Daniher (Ungarie/Essendon), Wayne Carey (North Wagga/North Melbourne), Luke Breust (Temora/Hawthorn)
F: Paul Kelly (Wagga Tigers/Sydney), Bill Mohr (Wagga Tigers/St Kilda), John Longmire (Corowa-Rutherglen/North Melbourne)
R: Bruce McGregor (West Broken Hill/West Adelaide), Brett Kirk (North Albury/Sydney), Haydn Bunton (West Albury/Fitzroy)
I/C: Mark Maclure (East Sydney/Carlton), Isaac Smith (Wagga Tigers/Hawthorn), Kieren Jack (Pennant Hills/Sydney), Tom Hawkins (Finley/Geelong)