Dragons breathe fire in Warwick
MORE than 60 years ago, in 1951, Mabel Mott was warming up for an all-woman curtain match to the Warwick and St George clash.
The then-19-year-old (back then she was Mabel March) was part of 13 willing Warwick women who had agreed to test their rugby league skills against a women’s team from Toowoomba.
The match was a pre-cursor to the regular visit from St George - which is why today’s visit from the St George Illawarra Dragons brings back strong memories.
“Back then I guess I was a bit of a Dragons supporter, but now I’ve changed ship,” she said, twinkle in her eye.
“Now I go for any of the Queensland teams - the Broncos or Cowboys I think.”
Mrs Mott said she greatly enjoyed taking to the field in 1951 and said there were a “few sore bodies” the next day.
“Oh yes, we were tackling each other. We didn’t have ladies’ teams back then and I think we were the first women’s team to play in Warwick,” she said.
“We were a bit sore afterwards, but it wasn’t too bad. We only played in sandshoes.”
The former league player said she wasn’t sure whether she would make the trip down to Queens Park to see the players in action.
Meanwhile, a certain Year 4 class and teacher couldn’t hide their excitement yesterday in light of the visit from St George Illawarra.
St Mary’s School teacher David Carr - who loyally wore the colour red to school - said he had been following the NSW team for much of his life.
“I won’t tell you how old I am though,” he laughed.
“I used to come in from Charleville and see the games at Lang Park (in Brisbane).
“I think it’s great they’ve adopted the Warwick Cowboys. The idea of helping flood-affected country towns shows the true ethic of the club.”
Mr Carr took his wife Sally to cheer on the St George Illawarra Dragons when they played the Brisbane Broncos last night and will also be helping run the coaching clinic for Warwick’s young league players today.
The St Mary’s School teacher has injected his passion into the classroom, encouraging his students to take up similar passions.
“I teach them to be passionate about something,” he said.
“They don’t have to be Dragons supporters, either. There’s a whole range here.”
Four of his students, Noah Murphy, Darcy Tattam, Dana Mitchell and Emma Reynolds, said they couldn’t wait for the team’s visit.
“I’m really looking forward to it - I’ll be taking part in the coaching clinic (this afternoon),” said Darcy.
No doubt he will keep it quiet he’s usually a Broncos supporter.