2021 will hopefully be remembered as the last season of COVID football! While only the girls got to play finals football it was another great year for the Old Geelong Football Club, giving us many reasons to be proud of our great club.

I would like to thank the Committee: Jimmy Legoe, Sarah Kirkwood, James Wright, Nick Betts, Dougal Morrison, Jake Ward, Toby Boyle, Sophie Batten and Peter Lemon. Committee members Sarah Kirkwood and Toby Boyle tendered their resignations, and we thank them both for their outstanding service to the club. I have been involved in a few meetings with the VAFA recently and the feedback is that we are the best club to deal with in C grade. I think we are lucky to have the best committee in the VAFA.

A special thank you to our loyal Pivot members. The club simply would not operate without your support, and we cannot wait to see you all at Como Park in 2022.

To our sponsors, our major corporate partner Harlow Bar, Abercromby’s, OGGA, OGCA, Australian Venue Company, Leedwell, Windsor Community Bank, MC Herd, Rex Gorrell, Wilsons Real Estate, Furphy Foundry, Angus the Bull Wines, Dellatite Wines, Edifice Property, Prowse Financial Group and Emma and Toms. Thank you for your continued support which is greatly appreciated.

We thank again all at Optimus Health, the quality-of-care Optimus provides our players is without peer in the VAFA. Thank you to Kathy, Nikki & Riley and we look forward to partnering with them again in 2022.

Our Oggettes had a fantastic season with both teams making the second semi-final where they both came up against a very strong Melbourne Uni team. The Oggettes were led by senior coach David Cooper with Ron Luff as assistant and reserves coach James Ramsden. Thanks also to the ever-present Nick Edwards. The positive impact the girls have on our Club and culture cannot be understated and the level of input helping around the club is brilliant.

The strength of our playing list can be highlighted by four of our girls named in the VAFA team of the year (Dani Trott, Laura Hallam, Isabel Currenti & Alison Youlten) with the latter two finishing top ten in the VAFA best & fairest. Losing a final hurts, however we have begun preparations for 2022 in earnest and we will look to again strengthen our playing list and work towards the ultimate goal for our Oggettes. We have a new senior coach in Jack Crameri and we are excited to see Cramerz & Ramma leading us to the Promised Land. This means we are saying goodbye to David Cooper and we thank him for his tireless work coaching the girls for a difficult 2 years and wish him well in his future endeavours.

Turning to men’s football, 2021 was again frustrating for all involved. Months of hard work left us stranded in second position after 11 rounds, with the Reserves on top undefeated! We seemed to be heading home with a full head of steam (including one of the great OGS victories v Ormond) when we were once again shutdown!

We entered the Under 23 competition for the first time which was a resounding success. After an explosive start to the season, we then fell away a tad due to the unselfishness of the boys playing senior football. Mickey Nicholls led the unders brilliantly in his first year of coaching and things are looking good for 2022. Our Thirds team, led by Zach Carroll, were competitive throughout (as a genuine thirds team) and provided an ideal environment for those players seeking to play in the higher grades, or play more socially.

Thanks to what I believe is the best coaching panel in the VAFA, led by Nathan Brown, Paul O’Connell (assistant) Dan Hannily (assistant), Colby O’Brien (res) Mickey Nicholls (U23) and Zach Carroll (Thirds). Their dedication and drive inspire all at the club.

At senior level, we had contributors across the whole park but special mention to three players who were named in the C grade VAFA team of the year in Will Sloss (named as vice-captain), John Simson & Christian Hatzis (leading C grade goal kicker).

Also, to our captains in Kath Dunn and Scotty Dixon. I struggle for words with these two leading our club for the past two years in circumstances we are never likely to ever see again. Their upbeat natures and care for their teammates is outstanding. We are blessed to have them as our skippers.

I would like to especially thank all those who continue to help throughout the season as volunteers (we need more). I’m terrified to name them as I might miss a glaringly obvious one; however, I know they all turn up every week not for recognition but because of their love of the club and the camaraderie week to week.

Finally, to everyone involved in the Old Geelong Football Club this year, thank you for your ongoing support and we cannot wait for 2022 playing on a refurbished deck at Como Park!

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