TeamGmsWLDPts
Underdale1413126
University1494119
St. Peters O.C.1476115
Kenilworth1476115
Goodwood147714
Alberton Church Un1458111
Semaphore Central145910
St.Augustine141132

In A2, three of the new clubs Flinders Park, Kensington and Exeter, finished the minor round on top, while the fourth, Adelaide High O.S., finished winless.

TeamGmsWLPts
Flinders Park1614228
Kensington1614228
Exeter1612424
Prince Alfred O.C.1611522
Henley and Grange167914
Scotch O.C.167914
Y.M.C.A.164128
Teachers College163136
Adelaide High O.S.160160

1933 was a milestone in amateur football with the formation of the Australian Amateur Football Council (AAFC). Following a conference in Melbourne on 23rd January involving delegates from South Australia, Tasmania, Victoria and Western Australia, the AAFC was formed with a view to bringing uniformity to the administration of amateur football throughout Australia. The membership of the Council was to be comprised of two delegates from each of the states, S.A., Tasmania, Victoria and W.A. However W.A. was not included when its request for a waiver of the amateur status requirement was denied. S.A. was represented by Hugh Millard and Jack Massey.

Elected to office were Major WT Conder (President), JS McCann (Secretary) and HV Millard (Executive Committee). Discussion on a constitution centred around the standardisation of rules and the amateur definition, and it was decided to adopt the Olympic definition of an amateur. The first meeting of the Council was set down for April in Melbourne.

The organisation of competitive football in the Adelaide metropolitan area was restructured in 1933. According to The Advertiser (17.3.33) the SANFL had become concerned about the growing strength of the Amateur League which was attracting players of high quality. The SANFL had control over most metropolitan football clubs in the state through the South Australian Junior Football Union, an umbrella organisation to which most metropolitan football associations, with the notable exception of the Amateur League, were affiliated. In order to extend its direct control over more clubs, the SANFL formed the South Australian National Junior Football Association to administer two divisions. “By forming what amounts to a C Grade the League has added greatly to its power as controlling body in this state” (Ibid, p.10).

Unfortunately for the SANFL, the only teams attracted from the amateurs were Colonel Light Gardens A and B and Goodwood’s B team. The impact of the new association fell mainly on the other associations (except for the North Adelaide District) which were affiliated with the Junior Union, so the SANFL simply took on more administrative tasks without achieving much in the way of luring better players to its own A and B teams. Significantly, the only club still in existence which joined the new association was Colonel Light Gardens, the rest disappearing into obscurity.

The South Adelaide District Football Association was particularly hard hit by the new association and so was reformed under the patronage of the South Adelaide, West Adelaide and West Torrens clubs, adopting the title of the Adelaide and Suburban Football Association (a title used on occasions in previous years) . The Y.M.C.A. Football Association re-organised into three grades (open age, under 21 and under 19).

The Amateur League’s own junior body, the S.A. Junior Amateur Football League, could not have been a roaring success either in its two years of existence and was disbanded. Along with the departure of Colonel Light Gardens, S.A. Railways Institute and Otiose transferred to Adelaide and Suburban, while Kings O.C., P.A.O.C. ‘B’, S.P.O.C. ‘B’ and University ‘B’ all joined the Adelaide Students Association, which was invited to affiliate with the amateurs (but apparently declined). Semaphore Central Juniors was renamed Exeter and joined the SAAFL proper.

Hence 1933 saw the departure of Colonel Light Gardens, Kings Old Collegians, Otiose and S.A. Railways Institute, and even more significantly, Kingswood, which had spent all its playing days since birth in 1913 in the S.A.A.F.L.. The Club had won the premiership in its first year and played regularly in the finals, but had struggled to compete since 1928. Finishing second to bottom in A2 in 1932 signalled the end and the Club folded at the end of that year.

Applications were received from Adelaide High School Old Scholars, Exeter (formerly Semaphore Central Juniors), Flinders Park (from United Church), and Kensington (from East Torrens), and all were admitted. Adelaide High took over the ground formerly used by Kingswood east of Cohen Avenue in the south parklands, Exeter shared Largs Reserve with Semaphore Central, Flinders Park played at Scott Avenue, while Kensington’s ground was in the centre of the race course at Victoria Park. 469 players were registered during the season.

An Investigation Committee was formed, presumably to allow prompt handling of matters which could not be efficiently dealt with by the full General Committee. Also, the Amateur League Umpires’ Association was formed, its main task being to meet with the Umpires and Permit Committee to discuss rules and playing conditions. Umpires’ fees were reduced from 30/- to 25/-, the Secretary’s Honorarium remaining at £5/5/-.

The interchange rule was revised to allow a replacement player to play in a key position apart from ruck or rover. The throw-in from the boundary as set out by the A.N.F.C. was also adopted. Originally, the ball was kicked into play, and this modification may have allowed a throw-in when the ball was touched before going out.

The constitution was revised by a committee under chairman Jack Massey which saw the introduction of life memberships. Nominated for life membership were H.V. Millard (Secretary since 1922), Professor H. Darnley Naylor (President 1915-1926), Dr. F.S. Hone (President since 1927) and A.G. Donnell (Semaphore Central and state player). A sub-committee of Massey, F.L. Heritage (Umpires and Permit Committee) and C.G. Tideman was appointed to consider the nominations, and it recommended the following:

1. that life memberships not be conferred on current office holders; 2. that life memberships be conferred only on officers or delegates of the Amateur League or others who have rendered outstanding service; 3. that only one life member be appointed at present, that person to be Darnley Naylor; 4. that players’ long service certificates be not proceeded with at the moment – it was more a matter for the clubs themselves to decide and so their advice was sought.

Another important change involved the introduction of the send-off rule, which had been in force in the Victorian amateurs for several years. A player who had previously been warned for rough play and who again infringed could be sent from the field by the umpire for a period of time that the umpire considered appropriate. This send-off rule became a distinctive feature of amateur football in Australia, and when the amateurs were admitted to the Australian National Football Council (ANFC) in 1948, the only rule which was not brought into line with the ANFC rules was the send-off rule. Many have urged the ANFC over the years to adopt a send-off rule similar to that in the amateurs, but at the date of writing it has not happened, even though the promptings are as persistent as ever.

Only one team, St. Augustine, was promoted to A1 as the other A2 Grand Finalist from the previous year, Colonel Light Gardens, had left. Hence only Teachers College was demoted from A1 to retain the 8-team competition. The entry of 4 new clubs and the exit of Colonel Light Gardens, Kingswood and University B increased the A2 competition from 8 to 9 teams. Underdale was the dominant team in A1 throughout the season, losing just one match in the minor round to Kenilworth by a point. S.P.O.C. had also performed well to qualify for the A1 finals for the first time.

Underdale and University won the Semi Finals in A1 13.13 to 10.14 and 19.15 to 10.17 respectively, then University won the Final 10.9 to 7.7, its first victory over Underdale for the season. Underdale challenged however, and repeated its 1928 A2 Challenge Final effort by playing out a draw, 9.15 to Uni’s 10.9. The match was replayed at Thebarton Oval under umpire Busbridge, and again Underdale repeated its 1928 performance by emerging victorious 6.15 to 6.10. This was Underdale’s first A1 premiership, and it became only the fifth club to win an A1 premiership in the 19 playing seasons of the Amateur League’s existence.

New chums Flinders Park, Kensington and Exeter dominated the A2 competition. The first two teams won their Semi Finals 22.21 to 6.10, and 10.20 to 8.5 respectively, and then played off in the Final. Kensington won easily 14.15 to 7.6, then repeated the dose in the Challenge Final at Unley Oval 9.16 to 5.13. Flinders Park’s misery at suffering a double defeat in the finals was compounded when the Club was reported for the behaviour of its spectators. The Amateur League Investigation Committee showed its attitude to unruly supporters by expelling the Club from the Amateur League forthwith, and so Flinders Park joined the Adelaide and Suburban League in 1934. In a flurry of disqualifications, clubs were also expelled in 1937 and 1939 for the same type of misdemeanour.

Awards

State rover Bill Walker of Kenilworth won the Hone Medal. The A2 medal found a new donor in Cyril Chambers, Chairman of the Amateur League in 1929, & President of Henley & Grange F.C. The inaugural winner of the Chambers Medal was Bill Bentley of Teachers College.

The leading goalkicker in A1 was Bill Hann of University with 66 goals, while Gordon Sawley of Kensington in A2 broke the Amateur League goal-kicking record with 139 goals, kicking a record 22 goals in the last minor round game.

Interstate

The interstate match was played at the Richmond Cricket Ground in Melbourne on Monday June 5th under central umpire J.McMurray. The S.A. team, managed by Hugh Millard, was as follows:

  • Baudinet, Bill fb University
  • Bentley, Bill hf Teachers College
  • Bradshaw, Arthur hf Prince Alfred O.C.
  • Bridgland, Lionel capt. hb St.Peters O.C.
  • Brunt, Bill vice capt. wing Kenilworth
  • Burnard, Don hb University
  • Burnett, Charlie bp Underdale
  • Colley, Ted bp St.Augustine
  • Conroy, Denny fp Underdale
  • Day, Gordon chf University
  • Dunlop, Dookie follower Flinders Park
  • Jones, H wing Kensington
  • LeMessurier, Peter rover St.Peters O.C.
  • McFarlane, John chb University
  • McGorm, Jack ruck Alberton Church United
  • Morton, Bo ff St.Augustine
  • Newland, Ben centre St.Peters O.C.
  • Tunbridge, Harold reserve Semaphore Central
  • Walker, Bill rover Kenilworth
  • White, Tim reserve University

S.A. was swamped in the first half as the Vics displayed brilliant high marking, fast systematic play and accurate kicking for goal. The S.A. backlines played well and the rucks and rovers won their positions, but Victoria was far too good on the day winning by 9 goals. Victorian full forward LaFontaine kicked 14 goals.

Team1Q2Q3QFinal
Victoria7.413.718.921.14 (140)
S.A.2.34.59.1112.14 (86)