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Australian Kytherian Sporting Cups and Trophies – part 1

In Australia, two Kytherians play very important roles in some of the largest sports in Australia. Peter V’landys is the chairman of the Australian Rugby League as well as the chief executive and a board member of Racing New South Wales. Nick Politis is chairman of the Sydney Rooster NRL team, arguably one of the most successful football teams in Australia. He is affectionately known as "the Godfather”.


Kytherians have been major supporters of sports and sporting teams in Australia for almost as long as Kytherians have been immigrating to Australia. As Kytherians often owned the local cafes in country towns, they were the lifeblood of the town, and because of this they would often sponsor the local sporting teams or competitions.

 

Reading historical newspapers shows just how many Kytherians were involved in local sports as well as how diverse these sports were.

 In conducting my research for this blog, I found that even my own grandfather sponsored a local rugby league team and he also played in the same competition.  This was a wonderful surprise to me. If we visited my grandfather on a weekend, he was often watching rugby league on television, but I had no idea his love for the sport lasted decades.

 

Below are just some examples of the possibly hundreds of sporting trophies and cups that bear a Kytherian surname. These just include the Vlandis, Baveas, Mageros and Feros surnames with more to come in future blogs. It is not always possible to find exactly who the supporter of these cups and trophies were as there were often a few people with the same surname living in the same towns, or we have been unable to identify which man was living in the town during those years, but the surnames leave no doubt that these were Kytherian men who so generously donated their time and money to support the locals in their sporting competitions.

 

Vlandis

Landis Cup (rugby league) – this cup was presented to the second-grade winner of the Gloucester, NSW rugby league competition from about 1930 to 1938. It included towns such as Gloucester, Stratford, Barrington and Carsonville and was a four-round competition. The Kytherian responsible for this Cup was my grandfather, Spiros Vlands (Spero Landis) from the Blue Bird Café in Gloucester.

An unidentified group of footballers from about 1932 similar to any team in a country town at the time. Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales

Peter Vlandys Cup (rugby league) – this cup was also for a rugby league competition in 1940. It was a competition between Gloucester, Kempsey, Port Macquarie, Camden Haven and Macleay. It is unknown which Peter Vlandis was living in this area at this time.

 

Baveas

Baveas Cup (football – particular code is unknown) – this cup was presented to the winner of a football in the towns of Gilgandra, Gular, Coonamble, Tooraweenah, Gulargambone, Warren and Coolah between about 1926 and 1929. There were at least two Baveas men in the local community at the time.


Baveas Cup (cricket) – seems this was a cricket competition between Gilgandra and Eumungerie between 1930 and 1936. Sponsor is unknown.

 

Baveas Cup (cricket) – another cricket competition in the same district as above, but only included Gilgandra, Gulargambone and Balladoran. This cup was presented in 1945. Sponsor is unknown.

 

Baveas Cup (cycling) – this cup was presented to the winner of a cycling race in Glen Innes in 1937. Sponsor is unknown.

 

Mageros

M Mageros Cup (tennis) – this cup was presented to the winner of the Burleigh Heads Tennis Club men's single champion in 1951. Sponsor is unknown.

 

Feros

Feros Cup (lawn bowls) – this cup was presented from 1928 to1933 and it is unknown if it was for the men’s, woman’s, singles or doubles competition in Ballina or a multi-town event. There were multiple Feros men living in Ballina at the time, so the actual sponsor is unknown. What is known is he donated the cup because “he appreciated the friendships made on the green”.  

 

Feros Gold Cup (fly-casting) – this cup was presented to the winner of the fishing fly-casting competition at the Armidale and District Rod Fishermen's Association from 1932 to 1936. This cup may have been sponsored by Nikolaos Firos (Nicholas Feros) who was living in Armidale at the time, but this has not been confirmed.

Advertisement from Armidale and New England Genreral Advertiser 22 April 1932. Image from Trove

Feros Cup (cycling) – the winner of possibly a 10-mile cycling race from the Byron Bay and Ballina Cycling Clubs in 1934 and 1935 would receive this cup. There were at least two Feros men living in Byron Bay at the time, Georgios and his brother Ioannis. It is possible either men, both or neither are the sponsors of this cup.

 

Feros Bros Cup (surf lifesaving) – it is unknown who these brothers living in Ballina are, but he sponsored the local surf club by supplying a cup for the junior surf race to win between 1935 and 1938.

 

Feros Cup, later changed to Mick Feros Gold Cup (rifle shooting) – this cup was given to the winner of the B grade teams from towns that included Barraba, Manilla, Hillgrove, Warialda, Bingara, Coffs Harbor, Dorrigo, Grafton, Raleigh, Kempsey and Gleniffer. It seems it was not a regular competition but was awarded when a challenge from a rival town was accepted. This lasted from 1934 to 1954 and the sponsor is unknonw.

 

Feros Cup (school) – this is one of the more unusual cups found in my research. This cup was given to the house that had the best all-round girl at Hilton Presbyterian School and was awarded from 1940 to 1953. Again, the actual man is unknown.

 

Feros Cup (cricket) – the towns vying for this club are unclear. Armidale and Uralla are confirmed but there are possibly others. This cup was given in 1945 to 1951 and the name of the sponsor is unknown.

 

Nick Feros Cup (fishing) – this was a cup given for a fishing achievement. No details have been found other than it was presented in Guyra in 1920. No Nick Feros has been found living in Guyra as of yet, but we are constantly researching.

 

The following cups were probably donated or sponsored by Michalis Firos (Michael Feros) in Dorrigo. He was born in 1895 to Nikolaos Firos and Vasilou. He was an influential man in Dorrigo from the moment he arrived until his death there in 1969. A blog will be written about him in the next few months.

 

Feros Cup (tennis) – this was presented to the winner of the Don Dorrigo ladies double’s competition from 1929 to 1937. Women from Dorrigo, Urunga and Fernbrook all challenged for this prize.

 

Feros Cup or Feros Challenge Cup (cricket) – this cup was presented from 1931 to 1934 and was open to all cricket associations within a 70-mile radius of Dorrigo. Orara River, Nana Glen, Nambucca, Coramba, Bowraville and Macksville were some towns that competed. All games were play in one day from 10am to 6pm with an hour break for lunch. Each side had two innings. From the newspapers I read, the real grudge matches seemed to be between Dorrigo and Orana.

 

Feros Cup (golf) – the winner of the golf competition in Dorrigo in 1939 was given this cup. It is unknown if it was a male or female competition. Seems it was only presented in the one year.

 

As you can see, there are very many cups with a Kytherian name on them and this is just from four Kytheran surnames; Vlandis, Baveas, Mageros and Feros. Look out for future blogs showing sporting sponsorships from other Kytherian immigrants in the future.

 



Blibliogrpahy

Trove


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