The Melbourne Rules : An Esoteric History compiled by Brian Membrey
Footy During the Second World War
Last Updated : September -
While football in Melbourne fought its own battle during the First World War (ummm! probably the project for the 2018-
With the subsequent fall of Singapore, Japanese advances in Malaya, Java and New Guinea, and bombing raids on Darwin and Broome, most of the Australian volunteers where held back “at home” in sharp contrast to the Great War where on average a serviceman was embarked for Egypt or later the Western Front probably 10 to 12 weeks after enlisting.
The Australians from early in 1942 were joined by the U.S. forces, one estimate later in that year suggesting perhaps 60,000 “Yanks” in Melbourne alone, often referred to in both Melbourne and England as “over-
Initially, many of the Americans were located at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (aka “Camp Murphy” where the grandstand and other buildings were converted to sleeping accommodation, training areas and medical facilities -
As it emerged, the difference was immaterial as a tram strike went thousands were discouraged from attending anyway and the finals were back at Princes Park the following year.
Many of the players of the 1939 and 1940 seasons that had enlisted and served in the Middle East had been returned to Australia for our local defence, and combined with a rush of volunteers after Pearl Harbor, competitions in which Army, R.A.A.F. and to a lesser extent Navy units competed resulted in teams that proved highly competitive in charity matches with the leading League sides and probably, according to some observers would have been even superior if they had had been able to train together regularly.
On 1943, the military of both nations sought to ease the friction that had built up between the Australian and U.S. troops by introducing three American baseball teams into the local competition and encouraging challenges between gridiron and “Melbourne Rules” players at various charity sports carnivals which ultimately resulted in a unique, but sadly short-
By 1945, football had returned almost to normal, although many players were still away on service. The Victorian Football association and a number of junior competitions resumed, although providing adequate supplies of uniforms and footballs remained a struggle right through to the end of the 1946 season.
Three League rounds had been played before news came through in May that Germany had surrendered to the Allied forces ; the surrender of Japan came on the Wednesday following the 17th round of League matches.
And lest we forget football friends in other states -
AUSTUS : an innovative mix of Melbourne Rules and gridiron devised to encourage friendly competition between American serviceman and Australians -
|1872 The Challenge Cup|
|1876 The Big Blue|
|1879 The Big Blue|
|1879 : Under Lights : Games|
|1896 : The First "Grannie"|
|1903 Land of Bacon and Milk|
|1912 : The V.F.A. - Take Three!|
|1915 The Camp Team>>|
|1917 Behind The Lines|
|1939 The V.F.A. Grand Final|
|1939 Players Opinions|
|1940 Todd at Williamstown|
|1951 : Moorabbin v. Box Hill|
|1956 : An Olympic Sport|
|1915 Adamson Address|
|1915 The Patriot Game|
|Emerald Hill/South Melbourne|