Melbourne auction acknowledges all time football great Percy Beames

Author: Richard Brewster | Posted: 10th November, 2020

Richmond star Dustin Martin isn’t the only player to be voted best-on-ground in all three Australian Football League  grand final premierships (2017 and 2019-2020) in which he has featured.

These days, best-on-ground in a grand final is awarded the Norm Smith Medal – named after the legendary Melbourne coach who steered his team to several premierships during the 1950s and 1960s.

Before 1979, when the first Norm Smith Medal was awarded, the best player was just that without any concrete award acknowledgment.

Australian Football and Melbourne Hall of Fame inductee and former Age journalist the late Percy Beames claimed this feat three years running when Melbourne Football Club won three flags in a row from 1939-1941.

Beames, who also represented Victoria in cricket with a batting average of 51.56, was then appointed captain-coach of Melbourne from 1942-1944 and is a member of the club’s Team of the Century.

His premiership medals (lot 384) will be auctioned from 12pm Thursday November 12 by Leski Auctions at 727-729 High Street, Armadale, as part of the company’s Sporting Memorabilia sale.

Now that Victoria’s COVID-19 restrictions have largely been lifted, auction goers can physically attend the sale as well as view from 10am-5pm Tuesday and Wednesday.

The auction covers cricket, football, horse racing, boxing, rowing and Olympic Games memorabilia.

Among the horse racing highlights (lots 557-626) is a black and white photograph (lot 611) of trainer Tommy Woodcock with Reckless taken on the eve of the 1977 Melbourne Cup in which the horse ran second to iconic trainer Bart Cummings’ Gold and Black.

Cummings won 13 Melbourne Cups, more than any other trainer in history, and Woodcock achieved fame as the strapper to 1930 Melbourne Cup winner Phar Lap, acknowledged by many as the greatest race horse ever produced in Australia.

Other auction features include AFL cigarette and trade cards (lots 459-491) such as 1972 Scanlens “Footballers” complete set featuring legendary Richmond rover Kevin Bartlett (lot 472).

Cricketing memorabilia is another strong point with sections broken into 19th century, 1900-1927, 1928-1948 The Bradman Years, and 1949-recent. The items include a signed fine original oil painting of the iconic Australian batsman Don Bradman by an unknown artist (lot 177).

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