Darebin Heritage Links :




Compiled for OzSportsHistory by Brian Membrey


Day Fourteen, Friday, December 7

9.00 am GYMNASTICS (Women), West Melbourne Stadium.

10.00 am CYCLING (Road Race), Broadmeadows.

1.30 pm FOOTBALL (Bronze Medal Match), Main Stadium.

2.00 pm SWIMMING (Water Polo), Swimming Stadium.

3.00 pm GYMNASTICS (Exhibitions and Distribution of Prizes), West Melbourne Stadium.

4.00 pm DEMONSTRATION (Australian Rules Football), Main Stadium or Olympic Park.

7.30 pm SWIMMING, Swimming Stadium.

400 metres Free Style - Ladies - Final.

1500 metres Free Style - Men - Final.

High Diving - Ladies - Final,

Water Polo - Final


The demonstration Australian Rules match was eventually played at the M.C.G. following the Bronze Medal football.  

Given that the Olympics were strictly for amateurs, one side was selected from the Victorian Amateur Football Association, the other from Victorian Football League and Association representatives who played as amateurs.

The VFL-VFA jumper was emerald green with white trim and the five Olympic rings and the team actually wore black shorts on the day, despite earlier publicity pictures showing Collingwood's Ray Gabelich in white.  The VAFA wore the reverse, white with green trim, the five rings and white shorts.

After a six goal to one opening term, the VAFA went on to win comfortably, 12.9.81 to 8.7.55.

Although of novelty value at the time, the game is perhaps significant in that it was the first Australian Rules contest to be televised. The first broadcast of a "real" match was HSV-7's coverage of the last quarter of the round 8 match between Collingwood and South Melbourne the following year.

Full story and teams


The very faded publicity photo of “Gabbo” far right often bobs up but is perhaps misleading : the alternative shows the team photo taken before the match with the big fella second from the left in the back row. The image below show three of the V.A.F.A. Players clearing the ball from the League’s goal square