Otway Districts honours the Rovers

By Ben Martin, Colac Herald

Otway Districts will honour the Rovers during the club’s annual heritage day, inviting back past players from the Rovers days while the current senior footballers and A Grade netballers will wear the Rovers’ green and gold colours for tomorrow’s clash with Colac Imperials.

The Rovers, who played at Beech Forest’s Ditchley Park, spent 23 years in the Colac district league before merging with Gellibrand to form Otway Districts in 1982.

The Rovers were formed in 1957 when Beech Forest, Johanna and Lavers Hill footy clubs merged, and won a premiership in their first year.

The club played in a whopping 10 grand finals and won four flags in a 12-year span between ‘57 and 1968.

In 1974, the Otway Rovers absorbed the Carlisle River club.

Tomorrow is the second-straight heritage day for Otway Districts, after the club wore the purple and gold “Violet Crumble” jumpers that the club wore between 1982 and 1994 in a clash against Simpson last year.

“On the success of last year when we wore the Violet Crumble jumpers, we thought it was a good idea to continue to build on that and recognise our past,” Demons president Dean Mahoney said.

“This year we’ve chosen to recognise the Rovers,” he said.

“The senior team and the A Grade netballers will be wearing the Rovers’ green with a gold V.”

Mahoney said the club was excited to build on celebrating its history in years to come.

“Recognising our history is definitely something we’d like to do more of,” he said.

“For the new players and people involved with the club, it’s great for them to get an understanding of the history of the club and where we’ve come from, how many little areas in the Otways we take in.”

The club will have memorabilia from the Rovers days in its clubrooms during tomorrow’s match.

“Rory (Harrington)’s done a lot of working pulling in past players from the Rovers days,” he said.

“It’ll definitely be good to have them back, having a few conversations about the old days.”