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GVL | Mooroopna unveils heritage guernsey

Across generations: Mooroopna’s Coby James and Chris Nield meet past player Kevin Holden during the week to unveil the club’s new heritage guernsey. Photo by Contributed

A touch of history will be on display at Mooroopna Recreation Reserve on Saturday for the match of the round in the Goulburn Valley League.

Mooroopna will run out against Euroa in the round six clash donning a classy heritage guernsey.

The Cats unveiled their eye-catching new strip during the week, which pays homage to the club’s playing guernsey from yesteryear.

Club supporters and onlookers will witness present-day heroes, Chris Nield and Jack Hunt, don the same colours worn by past club legends such as Leo Dwyer.

The heritage guernsey, which is predominantly navy blue with MFC emblazoned on the front, is identical to what Mooroopna’s footballers wore on match days pre-World War II — minus the wool and collars of course.

The club’s seniors won five premierships during that period.

Mooroopna president Bill Dowling said the club was excited to showcase the new playing strip.

“It has been a while in the making. We’ve been pretty keen to have a clash strip,” he said.

“Whenever we play Euroa it does become quite hard to identify the two teams due to the predominant white in both jumpers.

“This heritage jumper looks great; it honours the club’s history and we’re looking forward to hearing the feedback from supporters and players.”

Although most supporters won’t have memories of the pre-WWII guernseys, there is one former player who vividly remembers the Mooroopna of old.

Kevin Holden, 94, was on hand when Nield and Mooroopna rising star Coby James unveiled the club’s heritage guernsey for this weekend.

“I remember the jumper well and it’s great the club is bringing it back to use for special games,” Holden said.

Although Holden’s visits to Mooroopna Recreation Reserve to watch the Cats are few and far between these days, he was happy to greet the current-day Cats.

Despite turning 95 in August, Holden has not lost his quick wit and sense of humour.

There was plenty of good-natured banter between the trio.

Holden told the 16-year-old James that it was a different world when he was his age.

“I turned 18 in August 1945 and the Japanese surrendered a week later. They knew I was coming!” Holden said.

The larrikin then took aim at the league’s leading goal-kicker.

“In 1953 we played Tatura who went on to win the flag. They beat us 13 goals to eight and I kicked all eight goals, I bet you have never done that?” Holden said to Nield.

Nield, who sits on 20 goals from five rounds, was quick to reply.

“I kicked eight out of 13 recently and we won,” Nield said.

“Ok, that does sound better,” Holden said.

“You win.”