P.O. Box 1610, Southport, Queensland 4215
Corner Musgrave and Olsen Avenue, Musgrave Hills
QAFL 1983-96; QSFL 1997-9; AFL Queensland 2000-present
White and black
Southport enjoyed immediate success upon admission to the QAFL in 1983, winning that year’s grand final against Morningside by 11 points. The side failed to make the following year’s grand final but there then followed a sequence of nine successive premiership play offs for five wins and four defeats.
A comparative slump followed during the middle years of the 1990s but the Sharks finished the decade, in what was often a turbulent time for Queensland football, as an irrepressible force, winning four consecutive flags.
Since entering the state level competition, Southport has been far and away the most consistently successful club, claiming more than twice as many senior flags as any of its rivals. The most recent of these premierships came in 2005 and 2006, the former courtesy of a 16.15 (111) to 6.14 (50) grand final defeat of Morningside. Former Western Bulldogs player Paul Dimattina booted 6 goals in a best afield performance which earned him the Joe Grant Medal. Southport led at every change, but it needed a 6.4 to 0.4 last quarter to put the result beyond doubt. In the following year’s grand final, the Sharks found themselves somewhat harder pressed by Zillmere Eagles, who led by 12 points at half time, and trailed by just 10 points at the last change and would be coming home with the aid of a substantial breeze. Southport, however, rose to the occasion superbly, and although the Eagles manages to move within 6 points late on, a superb snapshot by Glenn Screech with four minutes left pushed the final margin out to two straight kicks. Final scores were Southport 17.14 (116) defeated Zillmere Eagles 16.8 (104), with the Joe Grant Medal going to Sharks rover Dane Carmody who produced a typically vibrant and industrious four quarter performance. First year coach Craig Crowley emphasised the club’s enviable, burgeoning tradition by providing a direct link with the historic 1983 premiership side, in which he played alongside fellow previous premiership coaches Gavin McGuane and Jason Cotter.
In 2007, the Sharks came close to claiming a memorable hat-trick of premierships when they battled through to yet another grand final, only to fall short by 38 points against an impressive Mt Gravatt side.
Providing Queensland football maintains its current, hard won stability then the future of the Southport Football Club looks likely to be a long and fruitful one.
John Devaney - Full Points Publications