Club historian Associate Professor Rob Hess has verified that the Club first fielded a women’s team in the Victorian Women’s Football League in 2001. In fact, the Club has a long history of supporting women’s teams, including the possibility that women from Mentone may have played in a match (umpired by women) at Mordialloc Oval in 1956.
Women from the Mentone Life Saving Club, calling themselves the ‘Mentone Maulers’ also played at least one game in 1961, and on 26 July 1970 the ‘Mentone Maulers’ squared off against the ‘Glenhuntly Fairies’ in a match at Glenhuntly Reserve.
Closer to home and more directly linked to the Club, during the late 1970s former player Michael Eden coached a ‘Ladies Football Team’ (possibly for a couple of seasons). In 1978 they played three games, including a ‘grudge’ match against Parkdale and two games against Cheltenham. The report from Michael (right) highlights that Melbourne champion Robert Flower umpired one of the games, and the women played for a ‘perpetual cup’.
St Bede’s/Mentone Tigers AFC has a long and rich history, stretching back to the late nineteenth century. Our past and current female players are a significant part of the story that underpins our Club’s unique history.