Manly Rugby Elects New President

At Thursday night’s Annual General Meeting of the MRFC, Anthony Bergelin was elected the Club’s 24th President.

At 31 years of age, Bergelin becomes the Club’s youngest ever President.


In assuming the chair, Bergelin was quick to acknowledge the contribution of the outgoing President David Begg, who had been President for five years and the large shoes he would have to fill.

Bergelin optimistically outlined his desire, with his new Board, to see the MRFC become a very strong Shute Shield club, financially independent, successful in all Grades and with a strong recognition of the role that the Colts’ organisation plays in the transition from the Juniors to Grade.

The AGM saw the introduction of new Board members, including solicitor Morgan Lane, who has become Vice-President and former senior Macquarie Bank Executive and triple premiership winner Ian ‘Puss’ Miller, as a new Board member.

Board members, Adam Hill, Peter Alley, Claire Martin and Annie Doyle, Treasurer have been re-elected, whilst former General Manager, Lisa Matthews has been welcomed to her new role on the Board.

Bergelin, following his election, told the strong gathering of players, Life Members and supporters at the AGM:

“It is an incredible honour, and I hope I can demonstrate the appreciation that I have for Manly Rugby through my leadership. To assist me in that, I believe I have assembled a very strong & diverse board and I’m very excited to start planning this new era for the club”

“Our newly appointed head coach Billy Melrose has certainly hit the ground running since his appointment and his level of professionalism is already very evident. I have no doubt the club will be in a strong position come kick off 2017.”




Late, late try fires Marlins out of finals race

By Adam Lucius

What: Shute Shield round 18

Who: Northern Suburbs v Manly

Where: North Sydney Oval

Result: Norths 24-23

Manly finished where on the table: Seventh (58 points)

80 minutes in 80 seconds: There were a few if, what’s and buts heading into the final round of the most tightly contested Shute Shield in years, but Manly’s task was straight forward. They had to beat in-form Norths on their home patch and/or pray there was a minor miracle elsewhere. The Marlins found themselves in a deep hole early, conceding a try from the kick off and falling behind 14-0 after 21 minutes. Sam Lane posted Manly’s first points via a penalty goal in the 23rd minute. Norths added a penalty soon after before Lane crossed five minutes before the break to give us a halftime scoreline of 17-10. Manly then scored the next 13 points via tries to Richard Hooper and Nick Holton and a Lane penalty goal. At 23-17 with 11 minutes to go, it was fasten your seat belts time. Norths took up squatters’ rights in the Manly quarter in the closing stages but were repelled time and time again. With the siren having sounded, they just kept coming. The Marlins held on for at least three dozen phases before finally cracking FOUR minutes after the bell. The Shoremen needed to land the conversion from wide out to complete the heart break and duly did so. It’s the first time in six years Manly won’t be part of the play offs.

Where it was lost: The Marlins showed a ton of heart to work their way back into the contest but the sluggish start didn’t help their cause. They were brave, courageous and committed throughout an absorbing contest and had a few decisions go against them at the death that could have dramatically changed the ending. But the boys will look back at lost opportunities throughout the season, which finished with 11 wins and seven losses. It’s the first time in six years the Marlins won’t be part of the finals. And that will hurt until we get back into it in March.

Marlins' best: Every single player played their guts out but special mention must me made of halfback Matt Lucas. He told Manly officials he wanted to play, flying back into Sydney with the Waratahs on Saturday morning and turning in a typically whole-hearted performance just hours later.
What they said: “The effort was there but they were just too good on the day. We’ve been our own worst enemy this year. We lost games we were more than capable of winning. There is no-one else to blame.” – Matt Lucas

lucas v norths

Halback, Matt Lucas, fights all the way - photo by Adam MacDonald

Oddspot: A lot of things need to go your way for a season to be successful and luck sure was in short supply over the past couple of weeks. Every result from other critical games went against Manly as the Shute Shield form book was continually turned on its head. It’s just been one of those seasons for the Marlins

Where to from here: Get out and support the seconds and thirds in their finals campaign. As for the Shute Shield, we’ve got an eight-month wait for redemption

Away game vs Norths, 3pm 16th Nov, North Sydney Oval

Weird mystical forces have aligned all the grade teams in 6th spot on their respective tables. All the teams are threatened by the 7th position team winning tomorrow. Destiny is in the players hands. It is knock out football from now on.  Either win, rely on other results or boots off.

“The whole club knows it is a massive weekend,” said MMMs half back Tim Donlan. “We had the whole playing group together for a talk on Tuesday. Everyone is motivated to get through to the finals. This is what we do all of the hard work for.  

“We have trained well this week,” he continued about first grade. “It’s all been about clarity. Where we should be and what we should do in different parts of the field under different scenarios.

“We wanted to become the best defensive team and when we had the three games in 8 days, it worked really. Our defence fell apart a bit against the Rats but, taking nothing away from them, they were awesome on the day and any team would have found them hard to beat.

“We got back on track in all grades against Gordon. We now want to push for the finals and we know we are capable of getting to the Grand Finals.

The MMMs are putting out a heavy pack including a barnstorming backrow: Harry Bergelin at 7, Hayden Stringer, blind side and Junior Palau at 8.

“Yeah, we want to take Norths on upfront. It is great for my position to be behind a pack going forward. We need show aggression against Norths.”

Tim was injured in Round 10 against Easts. “I damaged my ankle and thought I was out for 8 to 10 weeks. I am so happy that I managed to get back after six weeks. It was hard work and credit to Ali (Alison Donlan, club physio).”

Tim played his school boy rugby at St Ignatius including a 5 test stint in the Australian School Boys team. He travelled to Samoa and New Zealand, with the team losing to the kiwis on the bell. Tim was awarded the Bronze Boot for being the most constructive player.

He then moved onto Grade Rugby at the Rats playing colts and then 1st grade. He was injured in 2013 and moved to Randwick where he had a frustrating season. He then came and joined the MMMs in 2015, securing a 1st grade spot before Matt Lucas’ return.

He is a competitive half back, quick thinking and with good pace and pass. No doubt his objective is to be in the Grand Final 2016!