Sporting memorabilia auction a mixed bag

The golfing community will always have fond memories of five times British Open champion Australian Peter Thomson who also made his mark in designing golf courses throughout the world.

Thomson died in June this year and his golf clubs and bag dating from 1957 were sold at Abacus Auctions Melbourne November sporting memorabilia sale for $1050 – a mere $50 over the catalogue estimate.

In an accompanying note the Australian champion said the Dunlop Maxifli clubs were the best he could acquire at the time.

The auction had mixed success with an Australian Rules Football 1918-19 Carlton club jumper the most expensive item in the – going under the hammer for $13,500, $3500 over the catalogue estimate.

The jumper, which is the earliest known specimen with the Carlton monogram, belonged to Ern Cowley who in his first season won the league’s leading goal kicking medal with 34 goals.

Other sporting items of note included an Australian baggy green Test cap from the 1985 Ashes series, player unknown, which sold for $4000, and a 1901 Melbourne Cricket Club metal membership badge (the first year the MCC issued metal badges) that went under the hammer for $3000.

The coins and banknotes section of the auction seemed to fare better with more lots changing hands and a 1927 Five Pound Riddle/Heathershaw note carrying the words ‘CHAIRMAN OF DIRECTORS, NOTE ISSUE DEPT.’ at $9000 the pick of the lots.

The correct title for EC Riddle was ‘Governor, Commonwealth Bank of Australia’. It is believed a mix up of printing plates was responsible for some notes showing the old title.


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