The Spike: or, Victoria College Review, October 1908
[review of the activities of the football club]
As accuracy is a point upon which we pride ourselves, we cannot say that the record of the Club in this season's football is an unexpected disappointment. Despite the optimistic paragraphs which appeared in the daily press at the beginning of the season forecasting our probable performances with joyous anticipation, we were not misled, and have always had a tolerably good notion that final results would be just about what they are. An unusual number of accidents and the breaking up of the team in mid-season by the visit of the University team to Sydney may stand partly responsible for the worst failures, but these are not the only reasons. As brute strength and ignorance have been more in evidence than science in senior football this year, it is the more unfortunate that we still seem unable to furnish many exhibitions of which scientific play is an outstanding feature.
Ever since the Club was founded it has been customary in discussing our continued defeats, to cloud the issue by dilating on the improvement sure to follow the erection or proper training quarters. A good gymnasium has been at the Club's disposal all this season, and there is certainly no improvement due to a regular use of it—on one occasion three men held the floor. Until a keen desire to train is more cultivated in our midst, we may expect history to repeat itself. In the heyday of the season, some excellent fights were put up, notably against Melrose, but the best that can be said of us is that we play the game in a decent spirit rather than with a murderous determination to succeed at all costs. Taken altogether, affairs are no worse than usual, and we may rest content that our achievements fairly represent our deserts.page 20
As blatant optimism has achieved so little in the past, we venture to express a conviction that, whatever the distant future way have in store, Victoria College will not win, the championship next season.
Hitchings, de la Mare, and Prendeville have represented Wellington Province on different occasions during the season.
de la Mare showed fine form during the recent visit of the New Zealand University team to Sydney. A typical newspaper opinion from the other side runs thus:—"Two men who stood out throughout a hard game were Lang and de la Mare, and their work was occasionally reminiscent of New Zealand representative forwards."
On the eve of his departure for Edinburgh, a complimentary dinner was tendered by the Club to G. V. Bogle, captain of the First XV. since 1906.