A look at bygone age of women's football

YEELANNA: The ladies that made up the Yeelanna team, circa 1943. Pictured are: (back) unknown, Jess Tapley, Joyce Barnes, Elvie Roediger, Thora Wagner, Elsie Mathews, Vonnie Madex, Molly Larwood, Gladys Haarsma; middle: Thora Brace, Irene Watkins, Sheila Fitzgerald, Joan Wilson, Monica Pedler, Shirley Wemyss; front: Doreen Pedler, Margaret Hodge and Vera Wiseman.
YEELANNA: The ladies that made up the Yeelanna team, circa 1943. Pictured are: (back) unknown, Jess Tapley, Joyce Barnes, Elvie Roediger, Thora Wagner, Elsie Mathews, Vonnie Madex, Molly Larwood, Gladys Haarsma; middle: Thora Brace, Irene Watkins, Sheila Fitzgerald, Joan Wilson, Monica Pedler, Shirley Wemyss; front: Doreen Pedler, Margaret Hodge and Vera Wiseman.

With the Women’s AFL competition now underway one Port Lincoln resident has recalled when she played football nearly 75 years ago.

Margaret Harris, nee Hodge, shared her memories of when women’s football matches were played in Cummins on occasion during a charity day.

Mrs Harris, who celebrates her 90th birthday on February 24, said she first played with the Yeelanna team about 1943 when she was 16 years old.

“I had been breaking in horses at Coffin Bay and Mum wanted me to join the Women’s Air Force, but I couldn’t join until I was 18,” she said.

MEMORIES: Margaret Harris shows the photo of the Yeelanna women's team, including herself, from about 1943.

MEMORIES: Margaret Harris shows the photo of the Yeelanna women's team, including herself, from about 1943.

“In the meantime I worked around Cummins and they had this match, it was the first time I ever played.”

Mrs Harris said she played in the centre and “used to run my heart out”.

She said the women then were tough, just like today.

“I had a tussle when me and this girl went after the ball,” she said.

“I sent her flying, when she got up she said ‘gee, you’re rough’.”

Mrs Harris said she could not remember how many times she played but the last time was about 1960, six weeks after giving birth to twin sons.

Mrs Harris said it was very interesting to see that now there was a national league for women’s football.