Sports journalist, and Longford Football Club tragic, Neil Kearney has made a bold prediction for Saturday’s historic game against South Launceston.
On the eve of the club’s 140th birthday, Mr Kearney said the Tigers’ seniors would record the biggest upset of the season by defeating the NTFA’s reigning premiers.
“I will dive head first into the back creek if the Tigers beat South Launceston on Saturday,” he said.
The Longford Football Club will celebrate its 140th birthday on Saturday evening, with Mr Kearney as guest speaker, along with two-time Coleman medalist Michael Roach.
Roach played for the Longford Football Club seniors’ side at the age of 16, before getting picked up by Richmond in 1977.
Mr Kearney’s connection to the club after spending “the first 20 years of my life” at the club’s Smith Street headquarters.
I would come down to Longford if there was a barbecue on – any excuse at all to get back to the clubSports journalist Neil Kearney
Club president Dennis Dwyer said the free event would provide past players with a chance to come back to reminisce on the club’s past.
“We really want people to come back to the club to reconnect and talk,” he said.
While Mr Kearney lives in Melbourne now, he still has strong connections to the club.
He said he attended more Longford games per year than AFL games.
“I would come down to Longford if there was a barbecue on – any excuse at all to get back to the club,” he said.
Mr Kearney plans to retell some of his cherished memories in his speech, while also emphasising the type of lifelong bonds football can form.
“The Longford footballers of the 1960s raised us,” he said.
“They taught us to spit, swear, chew gum and other dubious life skills – skills I’ve carried on to use in my 45 years as a journalist.
“One of the best bonds you could have in your life is with your local footy club, when we were soldiers in arms, even though we were just boys in shorts. “
The Longford Football Club’s 140th birthday will take place at 7pm at the Longford Recreation Ground, after the seniors’ game.