EWFNC Ryco Bombers
East Warrnambool Football Club is believed to have originated during the very early years of the twentieth century. Nicknamed the Stars, the club commenced its competitive career in 1907 when it took part in both Wednesday and Saturday competitions, winning the premiership of the former.
After world war one East Warrnambool was renamed Hopkins Ward, and competed with considerable success in the Ward Football Association, which to all intents and purposes was the forerunner of today’s Warrnambool and District Football League. Between 1924 and 1929 Hopkins Ward qualified for every grand final, emerging victorious from those of 1924-5 and 1928. The club enjoyed two more grand final successes in the 1930s, overcoming Russell’s Creek in both 1934 and 1938 by margins of 16 and 11 points respectively.
When the WADFL was formally established in 1946, East Warrnambool Stars were among the five foundation members. They have won two senior flags in this competition, most recently in 1995 when they achieved grand final victory over Merrivale by the astonishing margin of 143 points. Final scores were East Warrnambool 33.10 (208) defeated Merrivale 10.5 (65), but perhaps a little surprisingly the club proved unable to build on this success. During the late 1990s and first few years of the new century East Warrnambool struggled, and there were even suggestions that it might be forced to merge with another club in order to ensure its survival. However, it recovered to qualify for the finals in both 2004 and 2005, and in 2007 celebrated its official centenary, having plenty of reasons to be proud of its achievements, and to look to the future with optimism.
Unfortunately, the next few seasons seemed to indicate that that optimism had been misplaced. In both 2009 and 2010 the Bombers lost every match to finish an emphatic last. The 2011 season brought marginal improvement as they avoided the wooden spoon on percentage after winning just a single match for the year. Since then the Bombers have finished either second or third from last every year, with their best season coming in 2014 when 4 wins for the year was good enough for tenth place on the twelve team premiership ladder.
John Devaney - Full Points Publications