Packed with hilarious incidents, it stand as the most comical football “match” that ever convulsed a crowd. Such was that burlesque, Victoria v. Queensland, at the Hobart Carnival in 1924.
This article originally appeared in the Sporting Globe (Melbourne) 22-Oct-1935 p8
Great Football Dramas— No.17 Carnival Team All Got Goals Helped Other Side Too
With absurdedly exaggerated chivalry, the Victorias took it in turn to get goaIs, until every player on the side had kicked one — a record. Then they turned round and helped their opponents to score a few!
IN one delicious bit of "play," onlookers, almost choking with laughter witnessed the extraordinary spectacle of a leading Victorian player actually shepherding his own men off the opposing full-back, who was bolting from goal to goal!
Final scores were:—
Victoria ...... 31 goals 28 bhds. (214)
Queensland .. .. 17 goals 12 bhds, (114)
Total points for match 328
In that farcical game, two new records were set up – more points were scored by the two teams than in any other senior match in the commonwealth; and the whole of Victoria’s 18 players kicked goals.
The scores definitely did not reflect anything like the full extent of Victoria’s superiority. Had Victoria gone flat out from start to finish, as Western Australia did against the same team two days earlier, it is safe to say the final result would have been 50 or 60 goals to nil or thereabouts.
Queensland has never been exactly a hotbed of Australian rules football. The code has never flourished there. It has never really taken root, but has more or less lingered on in ailing fashion.
For years poor Queensland suffered crushing and humiliating defeat at Carnivals, without one solitary victory to brighten their weary way.
Queensland's Only Win
It was not until the Carnival in Sydney in 1933 that the Queenslanders won a game—or looked like winning one.
In that year — wonder of wonders— they actually defeated Canberra, who, by some mystic means, had sneaked into the Carnival for the first time, and probably the last for years to come.
But to hark back to Hobart in 1924.
On the first Saturday of the Carnival Victoria, vanquished Western Australia by 15-13 (103) to 14-11 (95) in that epic struggle, gained an early grip on the championship, whicb she subsequently won undefeated.
After that setback Western Australia went flat out for victory and a thumping percentage, in the hope -that they might yet snatch the honors, if South Australia were to down Victoria on the following Saturday.
And so when they met the hapless, ill- equipped Queenslanders the Tuesday, the Westemers in devilish mood, simply annihilated — them—literally butchered them in cold blood, in a scoring sense.
Blazing away with machine-gun rapidity for four quarters in their mad lust for points. West rattled up the record highest senior score of all time—43.19 (277).
It was Terrible Tuesday" for Queensland, who managed a pathetically meagre 2.1 (13).
"Bonny" Campbell, with 23 of West's 43 goals, rocketed up among the records; but the same season G. Gough (Northcote) bagged his 25 goals against Prahran. in Association football in Melbourne.
On the Thursday of the Hobart Carnival in 1924 Queensland, their terrifying ordeal at the hands of Western Australia still haunting them, faced Victoria in fear and trembling.
But the Victorians proved extremely chivalrous foemen—far too chivalrous for those of the spectators who came to see a slaughter.
Paddy O'Brien, Victoria's captain, had a spell that day, along with Beasy, Chadwick. Wigcrrft, Watson Collins and Moriarty. Roy Cazaly led the side.
Wallace Sharland, the big Geelong follower. and then covering the Carnival for The Sporting Globe, had a run in Victorian team.
This heightened the picnic spirit to which the Victorians approached and played the game.
Having beaten Western Australia, they were confident of beating &South Australia, too. Consequently, there was no obsession about percentage to put iron into their souls. They did not go out with the grim determination of extending no quarter to the Queenslanders— still dazed from their merciless thrashing at the hands of West.
Early in the piece, and knowing they could win by the proverbial street at any tick of the clock, the Victorians amused themselves by taking it in turn to kick goals.
It was a playful prank. so that every player on the side would goal It just rained goals, until 17 players had each kicked at least one.
One Victorian, however, obstinately remained goal-less. He was Mark Tandy, the South Melbourne rover, who, despite all sorts of encouragement and persuasion. simply would or could not kick a goal. But he was bombarded so fiercely with the ball when his teammates attacked that, in the end he bagged two!
Content with their harvest, the Victorians, with profuse generosity, then proceeded to help the Queenslanders to some goals. Just to make it interesting!
Shaking with laughter right through, the crowd almost went into hysterics at the tit-bit of a most diverting day's play.
Seized with a sudden ambition to kick a goal, too, the Queensland full-back, a veteran, bolted from his post with the ball. As he puffed along the wing with steadily decreasing pace, help came from an unexpected quarter. One of Victoria's champions trotted alongside him. shepherding off opponents who tackled him. Finally, almost exhausted, the gallant goal-keeper had his shot, but he was done, and the ball rolled harmlessly off his boot.
Victoria's goal-kickers—which means the entire team—against Queensland in 1924 were:— Hagger (6), Sharland (2), Duncan (2), Cockram (2), Thorp (2), O’Connell (2), Taylor (2), Brew (2), Tandy (2), Greeves (1), Fitzmaurice (1), Cazaly (1), Elliott (1), McIntosh (1), Shelton (1), Pringle (1), Pink (1), Wilson (1).
The Geelong Advertiser noted that there were only 50 people in attendance (including officials) and that "The farcical nature of the Queensland-Vicioria match may be gauged from the fact that the ball was passed to Queenslanders, who were allowed to shoot forgoal unchecked." 1
In Rugby League, Queensland had played Victoria only a few days before this match. In that Rugby League match, 9 out of their 13 Queensland players were 'International's', and they crushed the inexperienced Victorians in a lightharded game.2
1. INTERSTATE FOOTBALL (1924, August 15). Geelong Advertiser (Vic. : 1859 - 1926), p. 5. Retrieved October 22, 2016, from http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article211543505