THE St Kilda Football Club was in town on Friday and loyal supporter Jessie Macaulay was as eager as anyone to meet some of the players at an official function at the Wonthaggi Club.
And there was no player who received more attention from the Wonthaggi resident than exciting forward Josh Bruce, who called Jessie to wish her a happy 100th birthday back in August.
Jessie was thrilled to meet her new favourite player in person on Friday night.
“He’s my number one pin-up now,” Jessie said.
“I used to say I’d like Nick Riewoldt’s boots under my bed, but I think he’s too busy now with his own wife, so I’ve got Josh now.”
Jessie was at the MCG for St Kilda’s last premiership triumph as a 50 year-old in 1966, when the Saints overcame Collingwood by a point.
She still has fond memories of the day.
“In those days, we were able to bring our drink in so we thought that we were going to win so we were all prepared with our champagne and our glasses,” she said.
“My husband Fred was a St Kilda man. I didn’t see him because my friend and I were in the members stand.
“I wasn’t a Saints supporter until I met Fred. He supported them because he lived in St Kilda and he had a couple of games with St Kilda, but he was a commercial traveller so he couldn’t train.
“The night that they won he was in a bad state by the time he got home.”
Jessie still watches the Saints every week on TV and holds hope of seeing another premiership soon. Fourteen players visited the region as part of the AFL Community Camp, with midfielder Jack Steven, ruckman Tom Hickey and big man Jake Carlisle amongst the players involved.
The Saints visited Foster on Friday for a Superclinic with primary school students from the area, before autograph sessions at Alex Scott and Staff at Inverloch and Wonthaggi and an official function at the Wonthaggi Club on Friday night.
The Saints returned to Foster on Saturday for a junior registration day, a training session with local Thirds and Fourths players, a coaching seminar and a training session with the Southern Gippsland McDonalds Junior Academy.
Long-serving Saints fan meets her hero