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FEBRUARY 27 | 2013

APRIL REIGNS Moomba’s new monarch

OUT OF BOUNDS Scoresby traders fear football expansion knoxweekly.com.au


sha p ing the f u ture

[ 2 ] KNOX WEEKLY – YOUR COMMUNITY VOICE

February 27, 2013


INSIDE

knoxweekly.com.au

Footy shift has traders fuming

COVER: The Basin CFA community relations officer April Himmelreich is one of seven community monarchs of Moomba this year. See story page 6.

BY TARA McGRATH SCORESBY Village traders are angry over a Knox Council decision to increase the number of football matches played at Scoresby this year, saying the move could leave them tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket. It comes after the decision to redevelop the Rowville Hawks home ground, which is out of commission for this season. The council’s solution is to tell the Hawks they must play six of their home games at Scoresby while their ground is redeveloped. Traders, however, say Scoresby’s home games are already crushing their businesses. Discount Meat Outlet manager Wes Millar said cars belonging to players and spectators filled the Scoresby Village car park on game days, leaving no spaces for the customers. Mr Millar said his takings were $2000 less on game days and customer numbers decreased from an average of almost 150 each Saturday to less than 80. He said the council had not given traders a second thought. ‘‘I am just dumbfounded the council could make a decision without consulting anyone and not even having been here on a Saturday during footy season to see what it’s like.’’ Customers have told Mr Millar that when they see the car park is full on a Saturday afternoon, they drive on and shop at Knox City or Stud Park. ‘‘Midday until three is my busiest period, but come 12 o’clock you can’t get a park. I am fortunate that I am open seven days a week, so loyal customers will come on a Sun-

Costly decision: Wes Millar says football patrons park in the shopping precinct’s spaces leaving no room for customers. Picture: Sam Stiglec day. But it spoils their shopping experience.’’ Cr Nicole Seymour met several business owners — who are now reviving their traders’ association — in the shopping precinct and said the situation was urgent for them. ‘‘It’s not the football club that has caused the problem, they’re under pressure because many of the traders are sponsors,’’ Cr Seymour said. Parking limits in the village are seen as a last resort, and the football club has been encouraged to talk to its players and fans about where to park. Mr Millar said Rowville was one of the stronger clubs in the area, which made the potential numbers of fans an even bigger

Paying tribute Joe Piastrino has impersonated Elvis Presley and Buddy Holly, but most of all, ‘The Big O’, Roy Orbison. He is part of the flourishing musical tribute scene. Page 14.

concern for traders. ‘‘They park here for convenience — my solution would be to not have every single game here for Rowville and Scoresby.’’ Scoresby Football Club president Mick Anderson did not respond to several phone calls from the Weekly. There are no parking limits in the privately owned car park and traders are against any limits. However in a statement to the Weekly, the council’s chief executive Graeme Emonson said the council would work with the car park’s operators to enforce parking controls on certain days and times.

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last week that apparently counterfeit DVDs are still being sold openly at the Caribbean Gardens market, despite a 2011 AFP raid on a home in Lyndhurst which was related to a stall at Caribbean Gardens selling virus-affected computer software. Police say that counterfeit trade is widespread and that up to one in five Australians

has knowingly bought pirated computer or video goods. When the Weekly visited Caribbean Gardens market recently four stalls were openly selling DVDs of films that are still screening in cinemas. The AFP said that the Lyndhurst raid and the discovery of virus-affected materials was a warning to consumers.

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Ferntree Gully and Rowville Community Bank® branches

Apply Now Community Grant Program Applications open Friday 1 March and close Friday 5 April 2013. Drop into your nearest branch at 67 Station Street, Ferntree Gully or Wellington V illage, Rowville to collect an application form or visit www.ftgcommunity.com.au or www.rowvillecommunity.com.au customers of our Community Bank® branches will be given preferance.

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PEOPLE trading in fraudulent DVDs are risking up to five years jail, a spokeswoman for the Australian Federal Police has told the Weekly. She said people who were aware of counterfeit goods being sold, such as movie DVDs, games or computer software should call Crime Stoppers as a first resort. Her comments follow the Weekly’s report

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February 27, 2013 KNOX WEEKLY – YOUR COMMUNITY VOICE

[3]


YOURVOICE ●

The Weekly welcomes letters no longer than 250 words. All letters are subject to editing and must include a name, address and phone number. Post: The Editor, PO Box 318, Dandenong 3175, or email eastvoice@yourweekly.com.au. Post a web comment to any story at knoxweekly.com.au.

Phone 9238 7777 Classifieds 13 24 25 Distribution 5970 4803 Advertising fax 9238 7682 Editorial email eastnews@yourweekly.com.au Website knoxweekly.com.au Editor Greg Videon 9238 7646 News Editor Ian Munro 9238 7639 Regional Sales Manager Ben Sutton Sales Manager Georgina McLeod 9238 7777 Real Estate Client Relationship Director Matt Maasdijk 8667 4795 Publisher Antony Catalano Published by Metro Media Publishing Pty Ltd (ACN 141 396 741). All material is copyright and no part of this publication may be reproduced without written permission of the editor. Responsibility for election comment is accepted by Antony Catalano, 214-220 Park Street, South Melbourne, Vic, 3205. The Weekly endorses the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance’s “Code of Conduct”. All significant errors will be corrected as quickly as possible. Distribution numbers, areas and coverage are estimates only. For advertising terms and conditions, visit www.theweeklyreview.com.au and www.adcentre.com.au

www.reviewproperty.com.au

Re: Chelsea beats disability Such an inspirational story! Congratulations to Chelsea and her family, as well as the Curley Dance Studio. Carmel Hanneberry (via web)

grotty big step that trips people going up or down. Parking is already very bad at Mountain Gate. Oh well, I’ll have to look at paying all bills online too. Missed Business (via web)

Way to go, Chelsea! Living life without limits! Mendy Hartsook (via Facebook)

Re: Residents claim tree victory I have to agree. I visited the places yesterday. It was so beautiful. I strongly believe that possums live in the trees, and we saw birds that are happy on the trees, and the trees provide shade. The council should consider the long-term effects on moving trees. If the new trees are ornamental pears, all the things we saw won’t happen again.

I am so disappointed and unhappy about the closure. The post office provides the best service ever! I don’t want to go to Mountain Gate or Boronia as it’s much further and very inconvenient for a mother with a small child. Meapl (via web)

Re: Two wheels and a prayer Great article. Well researched, a good read. Thanks. Jasontlr1000 (via web)

Max Li, 10.

Re: Post office closure sparks anger It is crazy to shut the Edina Road post office when it is very convenient, safe and has good parking. All my online shopping comes from Bayswater North post office now and our local friendly cheery courier guy lost his job — will miss ya, Keef. Mountain Gate post office has long queues and a

I must express concern over the the revival of the motorcycle advertising campaign The Ride. which shows riders engaging in irresponsible behaviour as if such behaviour is representative of all riders. The advertisement reinforces and validates every negative stereotype that drivers already have of riders. As a result they are likely to be less tolerant and less accommodating of riders as vulnerable

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February 27, 2013

road users. Road safety is a shared responsibility and it is of the utmost importance that drivers understand that a motorcyclist needs space and respect. Motorcycling Australia asks that the TAC abandon the decision to screen The Ride and choose instead an ad that promotes shared responsibility. Rob Smith, manager Australian Riders Division, Motorcycling Australia

Re: Technology catches up with hoons How many drink-drivers were caught in this area between January and October last year? Drinkdriving is a serious road safety issue and it seems to hardly rate in the focus that the police, government and media are putting on road safety in comparison to hooning offences. It is agreed that hooning is a problem, but it is statistically proven that drink-driving is our biggest killer on our roads — 30 per cent of all fatalities are through this action. When is the government going to get serious about drink-driving? Why are they not crushing the cars of drink-drivers? Sharyn Littler (via web)

Bowel Cancer Prevention Bowel cancer is the most common internal cancer, with about 13,000 new cases each year. Each week approximately 80 Australians will die from bowel cancer. It is the second most common cause of cancer death in Australia. Bowel cancer can be treated successfully if detected in its early stages, but currently fewer than 40 per cent of bowel cancers are detected early. Colonoscopy offers the best chance of early detection and cure. Bowel cancer can develop with few, if any, early warning symptoms. Symptoms of bowel cancer can include: bleeding from the rectum of any sign of blood after a bowel motion; a recent and persistent change in bowel habit, for example looser bowel motions, severe constipation and/or needing to go to the toilet more than usual; unexplained tiredness (a symptom of anaemia); and abdominal pain.

The risk is greater for people who: • Are aged 50 years and over – risk increases with age; • have a significant family history of bowel cancer or polyps; • have had an inflammatory bowel disease such as Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis; or • have previously had special types of polyps, called adenomas, in the bowel. Bowel cancer usually starts from a bowel polyp. Bowel polyps are small growths on the lining of the bowel wall. They are common, especially as we age. Polyps are usually non-cancerous. However, some have the potential to develop into bowel cancer in the future. Colonoscopy is currently the best way of detecting and the only means of removing polyps from the bowel. Approximately half of all Australians are likely to develop a bowel polyp during their lifetime, but the majority of these remain undetected. If polyps are left untreated, a significant percentage of polyps will develop into bowel cancer. Although polyps are very common, they rarely produce symptoms and usually are discovered by chance at the time of colonoscopy. National Bowel Cancer Screening Program is also currently in place for screening all Australian citizens aged 50, 55 and 65 without symptoms with FOBT (faecal occult blood test). Most polyps can be safely and completely removed during a colonoscopy to prevent development of bowel cancer.

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Social housing shock BY TARA McGRATH NO applications were approved for new social housing dwellings in Knox during 2012, council figures show. That is despite bold predictions in a 2011 Knox Council report that 95 dwellings must be approved each year between 2010-15 to meet demand. In 2011, there were similar figures with just five social housing dwellings approved for construction in Wantirna. Councillors rejected a social housing proposal by Housing Choices Australia in June last year, a decision the organisation said left them ‘‘disappointed and dismayed’’. But the solution to resolving the social housing crisis in Knox — and across the state — is simple, says Community Housing Limited managing director Steve Bevington. CHL — a not-for-profit organisation that provides community

housing — built the large social housing development on the corner of Dorset Road and Burwood Highway in Ferntree Gully. Mr Bevington believes the sole reason for the lack of of applications for development was due to a lack of funding for housing providers, like CHL or HCA. He said there was a boom in social housing during the economic stimulus from 2007 because of a significant $1.8 billion funding injection from federal and state governments. The Ferntree Gully development was built during that time, as well as other social housing dwellings in Boronia. But that money has dried up and housing organisations are struggling to raise sufficient money to build new homes. ‘‘Unless there is another means of actually funding these properties, there will be no new developments,’’ Mr Bevington warned. He said the solution was to fol-

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low the lead of the Queensland state government and transfer public housing units to community housing organisations — ‘‘it takes creativity to fix it’’. Mr Bevington called it a ‘‘winwin’’ solution because it would reduce operating costs for the government, while allowing housing organisations to raise money. He said organisations could charge higher rent because since the units were no longer run by the government tenants could claim Commonwealth rent assistance. The organisations could then use that surplus to provide additional social housing rentals and purchase more housing stock. A government spokeswoman said almost 3000 governmentowned properties had been leased to the not-for-profit sector. A discussion paper was released on the topic last year and was being considered as part of the government’s new social housing framework that would be released later this year.

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THERE is a new queen in Knox and she goes by the name of April Himmelreich. The Basin CFA member was last week named as one of seven Moomba Monarchs for the festival on Labour Day. She was honoured for her contribution to the community. along with members of Victoria Police, Ambulance Victoria, DSE, SES, St John’s Ambulance and MFB. Ms Himmelreich said choosing regular community members for the monarch made it a ‘‘people’s festival’’. ‘‘It brings it back to the people, a sense of normality. Probably the most amazing part of it all is to represent an organisation that I am so proud and passionate to be a part of. ‘‘But I couldn’t do it without everyone else; there is so much support.’’ The mother of three, who has been involved with the CFA for 15 years, was put forward for the role by members of the CFA, although just who nominated her remains a mystery. She is an operational firefighter and community relations officer at The Basin CFA, a role that involves teaching more than 600

preschool and primary school-aged children each year about fire safety. ‘‘The benefit of the CFA is that there are so many roles, you don’t have to be just a firefighter. You can do both and that works for me. There are diverse roles in every brigade.’’ Ms Himmelreich has also developed a stage production about fire safety that she performs around the state with Captain Koala. She believes that honouring emergency services volunteers now is timely because many are sacrificing so much to protect the state from fires and other disasters. ‘‘Being the queen is not about me, it’s about representing the 56,000 CFA volunteers,’’ she said. Moomba holds fond memories for Ms Himmelreich because she loved the festival atmosphere as a child and remembers the ‘‘tinsel wigs, bells on a stick and watching the parade in awe’’. The Basin CFA captain Matt Ahern said the role was fantastic recognition for such a committed member. ‘‘The work that April does, her energy she puts into it, it just baffles most people,’’ Mr Ahern said.

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to a monarch ‘‘She is a good firefighter, but her community relations work is outstanding: the amount of hours of planning she does, pushing the right message.’’ Ms Himmelreich was supposed to be performing in a Captain Koala show the weekend of Moomba, which, luckily for her, was cancelled. She said being in the parade was ‘‘right up my alley’’. ‘‘Sharing the royal float with the other monarchs will be a once in a lifetime experience, I can only imagine it will be something wonderful.’’ While she does not know if she can keep the crown yet, if she is allowed to, Ms Himmelreich plans on putting it in a glass case on the mantelpiece — ‘‘no one will believe me otherwise!’’ Ms Himmelreich and Captain Koala will perform this Saturday at the Knox Festival before the torchlight parade with surrounding CFA bridgades.

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Ban on home-made cakes, treats HOME-MADE cakes and treats have been banned in Knox preschools, following years of similar bans in childcare centres across the municipality. Knox Council runs 36 childcare services for 1800 children and its chief executive Graeme Emonson said there was a fine balance between being too risk-averse and considering food allergies. ‘‘A number of children have allergies and it is our prime responsibility to protect them.’’ Mr Emonson said it was important that shared food was appropriately labelled.

Bans on bringing toilet rolls or egg cartons to centres for craft activities have also outraged parents, but Mr Emonson said toilet rolls had not been permitted in centres for almost 20 years. He justified the ban on egg cartons by saying the cardboard could still contain traces of eggs and many children suffered severe reactions to the product. ‘‘The council has a duty of care,’’ Mr Emonson said. ‘‘It is a well-known fact that consequences of an allergic reaction can be very serious, even death.’’

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Knox pet owners have been reminded to register pets when a renewal notice arrives in their mailbox in coming weeks. Mayor Karin Orpen said having a registered pet meant the council could locate owners more quickly if the animal went missing. Payment deadline is April 10. Local laws officers will conduct random doorknocks in April and those residents with unregistered

Wantirna Secondary College and Regency Park Primary School are among 68 Victorian schools to welcome a language assistant to help students speak a second language. The two Knox schools will host a language assistant from Spain this year. Bayswater MP Heidi Victoria said the year-long program provided a well-rounded learning experience with

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Sober festival Knox police will patrol the alcohol-free Knox Festival at Wally Tew Reserve, Ferntree Gully this weekend. Senior Sergeant John Hess encouraged patrons to have a good time while sober. The festival includes a fairground, twilight cinema, fireworks, art activities and workshops.

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BY TARA McGRATH DESPITE the federal government restoring hospital spending, it is unclear what services and how many beds will reopen at Eastern Health. Prime Minister Julia Gillard last week announced that $107 million would be returned to Victoria’s hospitals, after withdrawing the money earlier this year because of revised population forecasts. However, in a break from custom, the money will be paid directly to the hospital providers, bypassing the state government. Eastern Health chief executive Alan Lilly said the organisation needed time to process the announcement. ‘‘This is an unprecedented situation for our organisation. We will review the changes that have been made and assess how to move forward in the best interests of our staff and the community,” he said. Eastern Health was forced to close beds, suspend elective surgeries and cut mental health and palliative care programs in January in an attempt to claw back more than

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On her rounds: Tanya Plibersek at Casey Hospital with nurse manager Sue Coles and Dr Thomas Chan, during her sweep through the south-east last week. Picture: Michael Clayton-Jones/The Age $8 million after the cuts were announced. Maroondah Hospital recently announced it would close its diabetes education unit, and the future of that program still remains uncertain. Health funding has been at the centre of an ongoing stoush between the state and federal governments. Federal Health Minister Tanya Plibersek announced the boost in a visit to south-east Melbourne hospitals last week. She has previously said the funding problems were due to cuts of $616 million by the state government.

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FEATURESTORY

A long way from the top BY CHAD VAN ESTROP

S

wedish pop group Abba last performed in Melbourne 36 years ago — the last of three concerts at the Sidney Myer music bowl with almost 15,000 fans per show and almost as many outside the fence. But, in more ways than one, they never went away Nor did the fans. Take Trish England for instance, dancing and grooving to all the hits — Ring Ring, MamaMia, SOS, Fernando, Waterloo — here at, um, the Grand in Cathies Lane, Wantirna South. Well maybe it’s not exactly Abba, but for Trish and nine dedicated friends who’ve travelled from Wonthaggi, near enough is better than good enough. As the self-described Abba Groupies, they’re at their 36th consecutive performance by the Swedish quartet’s tribute band Babba. No Babba show is complete, it seems, without the Groupies. Not only do they pile into a bus and pursue the act to every Victorian gig, they synchronise their dancing and even their dress to what’s happening on stage. When Babba has a costume change, so do the Groupies — into identical outfits. Plastic musical instruments are also part of their routine and it goes without saying that there’s an even distribution of blondes and brunettes. Babba, one of the most successful of a number of Abba tribute groups, has the illusion down pat: the trademark hip-hugging sequined jumpsuits, the beards, the slick choreography, the soothing harmonies, even the effervescent Scandinavian accents. ‘‘If you close your eyes, you would think they were Abba,’’ enthuses Ms England. The respect is mutual: band member Michael Ingvarson, who plays Benny Andersson, says they keep a close eye on the Groupies. ‘‘It’s a sign we do a good job and they enjoy it and keep coming back. A lot of people over the years keep coming back.’’ The two pieces of mutual affection might illustrate why the phenomenon of tribute bands seems to be growing stronger and stronger, in Australia and overseas. It might not be the real thing but it’s close — and familiarity breeds content. There have been tribute acts since . . . well, since Elvis was in the building. In fact, Elvis tribute artists, or impersonators, are still probably the largest class of such acts. Possibly the first tribute bands — as opposed to impersonators — were those paying

Substitutes: Babba does their thing, like a certain Swedish supergroup. Below, Acca Dacca’s James Mcintyre channels Angus Young. homage to the Beatles, such as the (unimaginatively named) Buggs. The idea, of course, is to replicate, as closely as possible the look and sound of the originals, although the names are often appalling puns — the Fab Faux, ReGenesis and Fred Zeppelin. Most of the great names of rock over the past half century now have tribute bands or performers: The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, The Doors, Queen, Pink Floyd, AC/DC, Madonna, Oasis . . . the list goes on. But the tributes — and fans — spill into a range of genres and not all of them pop or rock. At the Cardinia Cultural Centre over the next few months, for instance, there’s an Englebert Humperdink tribute and others to Liza Minelli and Shirley Bassey, Doris Day and ‘the Queens of Croon’ such as Patti Page. That’s on top of the Ultimate Bee Gees and Ultimate Rock and Roll Show with ersatz Roy Orbison, Buddy Holly and Johnny Cash as well as Time Warp, a tribute to the Rocky Horror Show. And, while imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, some acts add a twist to the tribute: Gabba performs Abba songs but in the style of the Ramones; there’s Mini Kiss, a band made up of little people; and a range of distaff versions, such as the all-female AC/ DShe, Aerochix, the Iron Maidens and Lez Zeppelin. Australia has long been an epicentre

[ 14 ] KNOX WEEKLY – YOUR COMMUNITY VOICE

February 27, 2013

of tribute. In 1997 the Sunday Times in London called Australia "the main cradle of the tribute band’’. Journalist Tony Barrell claimed it was because ‘‘starved of big names, owing to their reluctance to put Oz on their tour itineraries, Australians were quite unembarrassed about creating homegrown versions’’. These days one of the original Abba knock-offs, Bjorn Again, and acts like The Australian Pink Floyd Show now regularly perform in the UK. Babba had its start in 1994, partly, band members admit, because of their physical resemblance to Agnetha, Frida, Bjorn and Benny — but also to cash in on the wave of nostalgia sparked by the release of Muriel’s

Wedding and, earlier, the greatest hits record Abba Gold. So before hitting the stage at the Grand, Michael Ingvarson pencils on a beard and straightens his hair to mimic Benny and he and James Macdonald, as Bjorn Ulvaeus, slip into those Evel Knievel-like jumpsuits. Jacqueline Hamilton is a slim, tall brunette image of Frida Lyngstad and Kelly Wild her blond match as Agnetha Faltskog. But that’s not all. They seamlessly segue from Oz to Swedish accents. “We just slip into the characters when we go on stage,’’ says Ingvarson. ‘‘It wouldn’t make sense to go out there and speak in an Australian accent. ‘‘It’s not just a band, it’s reliving the Abba experience. We’re always refining our performance and trying to make it more like Abba. They were such great singers.’’ There’s clearly a hunger for what they provide. About 450 fans flocked to Babba’s first show at the Central Hotel, Richmond, in December 1994. “Our manager advertised the first show almost like we were an international act,” Ingvarson says. “By the third year we were doing 180 shows a year.” Now the four have more than 2500 shows under their sequined belts and performed at the closing ceremony of the Masters Games in 2002 in front of 45,000 people. It’s probably a 180-degree turn from Abba to AC/DC, but the latter’s trib-

ute band, Acca Dacca, is another of Australia’s most popular substitute gigs. And lead singer Larry Attard was probably destined to front it. In 1975 his band Snake supported AC/DC at two shows in Sydney and after the death of Bon Scott in 1980, the band’s Malcolm and Angus Young were spotted at a Snake gig, checking him out as a replacement. He was called in to Albert Studios in Sydney, but the job went to Brian Johnson — so that’s who Attard now plays in Acca Dacca. And loves it. ‘‘No one can play AC/DC songs like they can, but Acca Dacca come damn close,’’ he says. ‘‘People actually want to come and see us and the elation on their face afterwards is great. It may be the AC/DC factor, who knows? ‘‘We don’t really have to do very much extra. I am in a black shirt and cloth cap and the rest are in jeans and T-shirts.’’ Attard says keeping Acca Dacca’s performances simple was vital. ‘‘We just play meat and potatoes rock ’n’ roll really. We don’t let our crowds down. We get out there and play it like AC/DC would.’’ In 2008 Angus Young paid Acca Dacca the ultimate compliment when he told German TV: ‘‘If you can’t see us, see Acca Dacca.’’ Attard is incredibly proud of that. ‘‘He was virtually saying that AC/DC can’t play everywhere, so if you get a chance go see Acca Dacca.’’ While AC/DC can’t play everywhere, the artists Joe Piastrino pays musical tribute to, for the most part, can’t play anywhere. He started off as an Elvis impersonator but decided there were so many of that original rock and roll ilk. Piastrino’s repertoire includes Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, The Drifters and most notably Roy Orbison. His first Orbison tribute was in 2006 and now includes many of the trademarks Orbison was known for — the dark glasses, slick, straight hair, tassels and dark jackets. ‘‘If you are going to be impersonating him you have to be as close as you possibly can. I don’t do Roy without the costume, it just doesn’t work.” But it’s the music, the singing that transports the fans. “When you hit those high notes on the head it’s a real buzz.” Piastrino says the emotion he is able to evoke from his crowds has ‘‘blown me away’’. ‘‘We’ve had ladies crying and men coming up to me saying that my song brought back memories. And that’s what it is all about.’’


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PICTURE: SAM STIGLEC

Ready to learn: Enrolments are open at The Basin Community House for classes in PhotoShop, Heart Healing and a variety of first aid courses beginning next month. Details: 9761 0209.

Fun-time learning What better way to educate children about fire safety than by combining it with one of their favourite sports? Bayswater CFA last week attended the St Andrew’s Cricket Club clinic at JW Manson Reserve in Wantirna in their shiny red truck. CFA members Jason Sargeant-Ross, Aaron Calder-Smith and Dave Tangey had a hitout with Jade and Josh before talking to the group about fire safety. The aim of the event was to raise awareness among residents living in high-risk fire areas.

Opening show: Deborah Conway and Dave Graney kick off the 2013 arts season at Knox Community Arts Centre on March 13 with some of their most popular hits. Details: knox.vic.gov.au/ theatretix or 9729 7287. Happy birthday: Arrabri Community House in Bayswater North will celebrate its 30th birthday with a free barbecue, activities and tree planting on March 15 from 5pm. Details: 9294 7530. Market Day: Westfield Knox hosts former Masterchef contestants Andy Allen and Alice Zavslavsky in the Fresh Food section tomorrow from 11am, demonstrating how to prepare seasonal produce. On parade: Knox CFA Fire Brigade Group’s torchlight parade is at Ferntree Gully fire station on Saturday from 8.30pm. Details: Graham, 0429 060 944. Pink tea: Bayswater Cricket Club will hold a lunch from 1pm this Saturday to raise money for the McGrath Foundation. There will be a cricket game, novelty games, silent auction and raffle. Cost: $20.

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Ding dong: Denise Drysdale will perform a comedy routine at Peppertree Hill Retirement Village in Rowville on March 6 from 2pm followed by afternoon tea. Details: 9212 8704. Folk music: Chris Aronsten performs at Ringwood East Community Hall, Knaith Road, from 8pm on March 12 for the Victorian Folk Music Club. Details: 0407 737 202 or vfmc.org.au. House activities: Orana Neighbourhood House in Wantirna South hosts a retirement seminar this Friday and has a bus trip to the Dandenong Ranges on March 25.Details: 9801 1895. Members welcome: Rowville and Scoresby residents can join a group which meets on the last Tuesday of each month. Details: Rick, 9801 4049; Noela, 9560 2528. Movie star: The Green Foot Flicks Film Festival is accepting film entries up to 10 minutes and rated G or PG from anyone aged under 25. Entries close March 4. Details: knox.vic.gov.au/greenfoot. Send details by noon the Wednesday before publication to eastsee&do@yourweekly .com.au or PO Box 318, Dandenong 3175.

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February 27, 2013

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Capturing what we’re losing ‘ ‘GOT to do it while it’s there,’’ says Boronia artist Jock Laing. His choice of subject matter, which includes the Bayswater level crossing — if not his style— is reminiscent of the famous ‘urban landscapes’ of Jeffrey Smart. Laing is intent on recording the passing of Bayswater landmarks, hence that one statement sums up the new Our Community exhibition at The Hut Gallery in Ferntree Gully. The exhibition showcases artwork depicting distinctive landscapes and streetscapes in Knox and surrounding areas. The changing face of Knox — from farmland to suburbia — has inspired artists to pick up their pencil or paintbrush and capture what lies on their doorstep. Laing has several pieces in the show featuring the Bayswater level crossing, Boronia streetscape

and The Hut Gallery. ‘‘The crossing, that’s going, the landscape is changing around Boronia and Ferntree Gully, and one day down Boronia Road it will be a double-lane highway,’’ he said. Charlie Wallis, who has been painting for more than 40 years, agreed that painting was at least partly about preserving history. Wallis and Laing have different methods when it comes to painting their landscapes: Laing photographs the scene he wants to draw, Wallis works in the open air and spends about 45 minutes painting. Other recognised Knox scenes captured in print at the exhibition are a statue in Ferntree Gully, the creek beside Ferntree Gully library and images from local historical homesteads. Laing said that as the area developed it was becoming harder to find inspira-

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Our community: Jock Laing and Charlie Wallis pictured with some of their artwork. Picture: Wayne Hawkins tion. ‘‘Unfortunately at the moment, we’re losing the atmosphere of a country feeling because there are too many units,’’ he said. The artists have to travel further and further out, according to Wallis. ‘‘I go to Cape Schanck, Warragul, anywhere in the bush or by the seaside,’’ he said. But both agreed that parts of

Ferntree Gully and Upper Ferntree Gully, as well as Lysterfield and Belgrave were still blooming with inspiration for artists. Our Community is open from 11am every Sunday until March 24 at 157 Underwood Road, Ferntree Gully. Free admission. Details: 9758 8955 or vicnet.net.au/ ~thehut. — Tara McGrath

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[ 19 ]


MOTORING ●

Hot Opels hit Australia German car maker is turning heads, writes Ewan Kennedy of the giant General Motors organisation. The Opel OPC that’s undoubtedly going to make the biggest impression on Australian eyes is the Astra coupe. We spent several hours in it on a rainy Sydney during the drive program for the official media launch. There’s little doubt that we brightened up the day for many others caught in the same traffic jams. Eyes of drivers, passengers and pedestrians alike swivelled as the shapely German coupe met their gaze. Astra OPC is powered by a four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine developing 206kW of power and 400Nm of torque. There’s far more to this OPC than simply the brilliant body styling and drivetrain. It has brakes, suspension and seating to match. Heavy-duty track work at Sydney Motorsport Park showed the hot German coupe to have huge amounts of grip and to be simple to chuck around. Great fun. But wait, there’s more. OPC modifies a whole range of vehicles. Being imported to Australia in this first batch of hot Opels are a Corsa OPC. Finally comes the Opel Insignia OPC. The fas-

erman car maker Opel has only been in Australia since September 2012 and in its early days seems to be struggling to be noticed by local buyers. But the newest edition to the local Opel family is likely to change all that. OPC (Opel Performance Centre) is the Opel equivalent of our own HSV organisation — and Holden Special Vehicles is certainly one of the best-known automotive names in this country. Opel and Holden are, of course, both divisions

G

Astra-nomical: Astra OPC coupe is a stunning looking machine that draws lots of attention.

Home grown: Sitting at the head of the OPC tree is the Insignia V6. Interestingly, it has a Holden-built engine. We have extensively tested both the Astra and Insignia variants and came away impressed not only with their high-performance credentials but also the way their suspensions remained supple and their tyres reasonably quiet on rough and ready back roads. Steering is precise and fast and provides excellent feedback. Prices start at $28,990, not including government or dealer delivery charges.

cinating thing about the Insignia is that its 2.8-litre V6 turbo-petrol engine is built in Australia; it’s then shipped Europe to be incorporated into the OPC. Insignia performed pretty well during our track testing. Developing 240 kW of power and 435 Newton metres of torque, the V6 drives through all four wheels.

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MOTORING ●

Honda adds 2WD to CR-V range Derek Ogden and Ewan Kennedy road test the new-generation SUV onda CR-V, the fourth generation of the compact sport utility vehicle that 17 years ago helped define the soft-roader segment, now comes in two-wheel or four-wheel-drive variants. Prices start with the base model 2WD sixspeed manual VTi at just over $27,000, while the top 4WD VTi-L five-speed automatic rounds out the range at $42,000-plus. Previously we considered the Honda CR-V was overpriced for a plain ‘meat and three veg’ taste of compact SUV living. Thanks as much as anything to a crowded market, that is a thing of the past, with the latest CR-Vs dishing up tasty features at competitive prices. Over the space of 10 days we experienced a broad span of CR-V models, spending time with the entry-level 2WD in five-speed automatic guise and the top-dog 4WD VTI-L five-speed auto with steering wheel-mounted paddle shift. The designers and engineers have worked hard on Honda’s theme of ‘bigger on the inside, smaller on the outside’. At 22mm shorter and

H

30mm lower than its predecessor, the flat front makes a bold statement with its three-slat radiator grille and big Honda ‘H’. A sedan-style profile is augmented by large wheel arches spanning 17- or 18-inch wheels Inside, the cabin is designed to give a feeling of openness. With the two front seats further apart than before, there is more shoulder room. Occupants are further spoilt by a new level of cabin quietness thanks to engine and road noise being kept at bay by improved sound insulation. Noise from neither engine on offer – the 2.0-litre or 2.4-litre i-VTEC – is intrusive. Efficiency is the name of the game here with combined urban/highway fuel consumption put at 7.7 litres per 100 kilometres and 8.7 litres per 100 kilometres respectively. Ride and handling are up there with the best in class, both with comfort and stability that are almost sedan-style. The new CR-V, even in base model 2WD manual form, is accessory rich. Satellite navigation and DVD are factory fitted options.

Bold bid: The new Honda CR-V comes with more radical styling than its predecessors.



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[ 21 ]


SPORT ●

Contenders face identical run chases NEWCOMERS Ainslie Park and reigning premiers Warranwood are battling for the fourth and final spot in the RDCA Lindsay Trollope Shield comp and both will chase 203 when the final day of the regular season arrives this Saturday. Warranwood (fifth place) looked in control early when it had Bayswater Park 5-54 off 34 overs. Josh Temple (63) and Ben Beech (48) then led the Sharks out of trouble to the safer waters of 203 at day’s end. Tim Hall (5-52) took the bowling honours for Warranwood. Ainslie Park captain-coach Mark Arnot (7-66) again bowled tirelessly for Ainslie Park (fourth place) to limit Wantirna South to 9-203. After sitting at 3-46, Michael McDonald (87 not out) and Andrew Jorgensen (39) combined for a fourth-wicket partnership of 65 to slowly improve the Devils’ innings. At the other end of the ladder, Norwood (ninth) let South Croydon off the hook. The Bulldogs were 4-105 off 54 overs just after tea, but Michael King (88) and Travis Degenhardt (64) combined for a fifth-wicket partnership of 100 to see South Croydon plunder 151 off the last 26 overs to finish on 8-256. Kieran Petri-Bruce (5-69) took the bowling honours for the Vikings. South Warrandyte (10th) needs to defeat Croydon North to have any chance in avoiding relegation. Michael Crosbie (86no) batted all day to see the Hawks compile 197. Darren Wilson (4-32) and Karnel Ahmet (3-31) made the going tough for the Hawks. North Ringwood’s bowlers Michael Scott (3-19), Evan Jones (3-26) and Luke Ridgwell (3-32) kept Mooroolbark’s batsmen in check for the day to see the Barkers compile 139 in 80 overs, with Lincoln Grigg (63) top scoring. In Wilkins Cup matches, Kilsyth captain Mark Steiner plundered 137 against a hapless Wonga Park at Wonga Park as the visitors made 272 all out. Dean Letson took 6-40 for Wonga Park, which was 0-31 at stumps. Eastfield was bowled out for 107 by Montrose, which ended play on 2-94. East Ringwood is well-placed against Lilydale with the Roos ending play on 0-28 after bowling out Lilydale for 193. Croydon Ranges made 7-273 against Warrandyte, which faces a difficult chase this Saturday while St Andrews posted 251 against Templeton. — Roy Ward and Tony Smith

Ariels’ sights on title BY ROY WARD NETBALLER Caitlyn Strachan wanted to get the best from herself, so she moved to Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels before the start of last season. Now the 25-year-old centre court player wants to push her side to the next level and win the highly prized Victorian Netball League championship division. The VNL season starts tonight. Strachan, who tied with Helen Barclay and Mwai Kumwenda for the Margaret Caldow Trophy as VNL most valuable player last season, said her side looked primed to contend for the premiership despite missing the finals last year. “We have worked extremely hard over preseason and we have a nice balance of youth and experience,” Strachan said. “The team is coming together really well and the VNL preseason competition has been highly valuable for us as it gave us the chance to trial a few new combinations.” Strachan will captain the Ariels this season, a further demonstration of how respected she is within the side, while Sophie O’Shea and Kaitlyn Black will serve as vice-captains. Strachan said she had revelled in the structured, well-designed training program which she credits with leading to her exceptional 2012 season. “I was looking for new challenges and the Ariels were provided with numerous challenges in terms of fit-

Passing it: Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels vice-captain Sophie O’Shea passes the ball last season.

VICTORIAN NETBALL LEAGUE 2013 CHAMPIONSHIP DIVISION February 27 Geelong Cougars v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 5, 9.40pm March 6 Southern Saints v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 3, 7pm March 20 Monash University Central v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 5, 7pm March 24 UB Ballarat Pride v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, Wendouree Centre, 6pm April 3 North East Blaze v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 3, 7pm April 17 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v Boroondara Genesis, SNHC Court 1, 8.20pm April 21 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v City West Falcons, Waverley Netball Centre, 2.30pm May 1 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v Peninsula Waves, SNHC Court 1, 9.40pm May 8 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v VU Western Lightning, SNHC Court 2, 7pm

ness and training programs; on court I thrived,” she said. “With Southern Saints, my old side, I was an experi-

May 15 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v Geelong Cougars, SNHC Court 2, 9.40pm May 22 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v Monash University Central, SNHC Court 2, 8.20pm May 29 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v UB Ballarat Pride, SNHC Court 3, 9.40pm June 5 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v North East Blaze, SNHC Court 5, 9.40pm June 12 City West Falcons v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 1, 9.40pm June 16 Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels v Southern Saints, Knox Regional Netball Centre, 2pm June 26 Boroondara Genesis v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 3, 8.20pm July 3 VU Western Lightning v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 1, 9.40pm July 10 Peninsula Waves v Yarra Valley Grammar Ariels, SNHC Court 2, 7pm July 17 semi finals July 24 preliminary finals July 31 grand final SNHC = State Netball Hockey Centre, Parkville

enced, mature player and I was comfortable in my environment. I needed to take myself out of that comfort

Picture: Shawn Smits

zone to get new challenges, more training and more structure. ‘‘The Ariels provided me with that extra edge.” With plenty of promising young players in the Ariels, Strachan says they’re all excited about the addition of a second Victorian side, Vic Flames, in the Australian Netball League competition which comes after the VNL season and works as a feeder league for ANZ championship clubs. “Victoria is such a strong netball state that it’s hard to break into that next level,” she said. “If we can be extra competitive this year we’ll attract more interest from coaches and selectors.’’ Strachan considers her side a serious contender for the title. “There’s plenty of competition in the VNL, but I believe that this year we have the right mix of players to be extremely competitive, to win the VNL competition.”

SEABL tackles match-fixing, drug issues THE South East Australian Basketball League has adopted Basketball Australia’s integrity and antidoping policies ahead of the coming season. The league believes these moves are a preemptive way to address any threats of match-fixing or performance enhancing drug use in the competition. SEABL general manager Mark Chivers said league officials were concerned about SEABL matches being bet on in domestic and overseas agencies so had brought forward plans to adopt BA’s official policies, which provide for penalties and investigative powers. “With our games being the subject of betting markets, there is now a possibility for our games to

[ 22 ] KNOX WEEKLY – YOUR COMMUNITY VOICE

February 27, 2013

be compromised by negative influences, even if those markets are based overseas,’’ Chivers stated in a SEABL media release. “Measures like this are designed to safeguard the integrity of our game. ‘���We can’t have outside parties attempting to interfere with the outcomes of our games. ‘‘It would hurt our game’s reputation and appeal immeasurably. ‘‘Make no mistake, the league will come down hard on anyone found guilty of attempting to fix the outcomes of a SEABL game.” Chivers said performance enhancing drug use had become a national issue following the Australian Crime Commission report into PED use and

sports gambling, so the league wanted to make sure it had the proper policies in place. “Even though these issues have recently been front-page news items, we’ve actually been considering adopting the BA integrity and anti-doping policies for some time,” he said. “While unlikely, we can’t be naive about the fact that these things could happen. The league needs to have the necessary weapons at our disposal to fight against the forces who are ready to compromise the integrity of our game.” The SEABL has adopted the policies as it prepares to become a fully integrated part of Basketball Australia next year. — Roy Ward


SPORT ●

Waters celebrate the one day in a decade BY ROY WARD A ‘BAYSIE Day’ doesn’t come around too often but when it does you can be sure of finding plenty of smiling faces at Bayswater Cricket Club. All four Waters senior sides won their matches on Saturday, a rare occurrence which the players call a ‘Baysie Day’. Captain-coach Sean Flynn said it was a special achievement at the club and one which hadn’t happened for more than a decade. ‘‘It was the first time in 11 years that

all four teams had won, ’’ he said. ‘‘It was a great achievement for all 46 players across all four teams.’’ The Waters first XI topped off the positive results with an outright win over Balwyn at Balwyn Park, with both sides creating an exciting ending as they each needed full points to have a hope of making finals. After the Tigers were bowled out for 176 on the first day, Waters veteran Mark Collins (70 not out) and Adam Watt (43) took their side to 6-181 before the Waters declared.

The Tigers pushed hard with the bat making 7-148 from 30 overs, which meant the Waters needed to make 144 from 22 overs to claim full points and keep their season alive. Dean Connell and Flynn opened the innings, putting on 48 which was followed by a towering performance from all-rounder Bryce Galvin who made 55 not out including seven sixes to take his side to victory on 2-145 with just two overs left. Flynn said his batsmen had stepped up when called upon. ‘‘Collins put in a

beautiful performance in the first innings, when when Balwyn set an aggressive total Galvin hit the ball really well and Connell made 48 from 48 balls. We were always going to be chasing a target at the end, we had to play positively and aggressively and back our ability.’’ The Waters win means they moved into fifth place, a point ahead of sixthplaced Coburg. They now play minor premiers Oakleigh at Bayswater Oval for a one-day game this Saturday in the final round.

‘‘We play Oakleigh and we need to win game to play in finals,’’ Flynn said. ‘‘They are the benchmark for the league so its the perfect preparation for us if we want to play in the finals.’’ VSDCA ladder: Oakleigh 63 points,1.62 per cent; Plenty Valley 57, 1.30; Brunswick 45, 1.07; Endeavour Hills 42, 0.92; Bayswater 41, 1.14; Coburg 40, 0.89; Preston 36, 0.96; Kew 33, 1.09; Box Hill 33, 1.02; Noble Park 33, 0.96; Balwyn 27, 0.92; Ivanhoe 24, 0.87; Mt Waverley 21, 0.77; Croydon 21, 0.75.

Magpies beat the premiers and avoid relegation

Bails fly: Ferntree Gully DCA batsman Jayden Bradbury goes out against West Gippsland CA during Melbourne Country Week. Picture: Daryl Gordon

Gully side praised for its Country Week efforts FERNTREE Gully District Cricket Association captain Andrew Devenish has applauded his young side’s efforts at Melbourne Country Week last week. The FTGDCA side won its first two matches against West Gippsland and Hamilton and looked poised to push for a grand final berth in the division 2 competition before losing its last two games to Bairnsdale, the eventual premier, and Traralgon. Devenish said his side would take plenty of experience from the week as its faced top-level opponents on turf wickets, a surface

MELBOURNE COUNTRY WEEK SCORES Day 1 at Casey Fields FTGDCA 6-229 (Bogar 76no Bradbury 43 L McComb 30) d West Gippsland 185 (Farrukh 5-33). Day 2 at Prahran FTGDCA 9-231 (L McComb 76 Dobb 59 Farrukh 30) d Hamilton 9-213 (Farrukh 4-31 Colee 3-44).

much different to the synthetic wickets used in the FTGDCA. ‘‘We had a young side with several of them making their debuts at Melbourne Country Week. It wasn’t a bad week at all.’’ Ferntree Gully Footballers’ duo Nick Bogar,

Day 3 at Frankston Bairnsdale 6-265 & 0-34 (Colee 3-40) d FTGDCA 189 (Bogar 44 Colee 31) Day 4 at Mt Waverley Traralgon 7-212 (Bogar 4-27 Farrukh 3-26) d FTGDCA 9-207 (Bogar 42 L McComb 40)

aged 25, and Luke McComb, aged 17, were the cream of the FTGDCA’s batsmen and Bogar and Ferntree Gully star Muhammad Farrukh were the best of the bowlers. ‘‘Bogar scored runs each day and was probably our

best player for the week,’’ Devenish said. ‘‘McComb made an impressive 76 on day two and got 40 on the last day on a deck which was hard to bat on. ‘‘The younger guys haven’t played much on turf and its a lot different to what they were used to and facing quality opposition made them have to step up each day so they will take a lot from it.’’ Devenish praised the efforts of his side and thanked senior teammates Jay Colee and Farrukh for their leadership along with the excellent support from officials. — Roy Ward

BELGRAVE will enter the final round of the FTGDCA Norm Reeves Shield in strange territory this Saturday. For the first time in several seasons, the Magpies won’t be fighting to avoid relegation. Magpies captain Scott Vozzo led his side to an upset victory over reigning premiers Upwey-Tecoma on Saturday, taking 7-48 as the Tigers were bowled out for 114 chasing the Magpies’ first day total of 210. The win meant the Magpies are more than a game clear of bottom place, leaving The Basin and Knoxfield to fight it out to avoid relegation to Decoite Shield. Vozzo said he was proud of his team for fighting hard across both days against the Tigers. ‘‘For the past five years we have been fighting it out on the last day of the season,’’ he said. ‘‘It’s nice to go into the last game without having to worry about it, the players might enjoy the game more.’’ Vozzo said the Magpies had done the hard work at the end of the first day getting three late Tigers wickets, including captain Sam Taylor. Vozzo said his side needed to focus on developing its young players while

adding a few recruits during the offseason. Upper Ferntree Gully was emphatic in its win over The Basin. Chasing 297, the Kings were 5-318 at the close of play. Adam Slack’s 103 provided the base for the win, with Josh Henry, Marcus McDonald, and Jay Colee making contributions to a team well set for finals action. Eildon Park made sure of the six points against Ferntree Gully with Steve Pimm taking 7-33 to break a run of three losses. The Panthers hold onto second with only percentage separating the top three. Johnson Park cemented fourth spot with a win over Knoxfield with Adam Dobb making 56. Knox Gardens made sure its first year in the top grade was fruitful, winning their fifth game of the year at the expense of Footballers. In Decoite Shield, Monbulk beat Rowville with one wicket down, Blake Walter scoring 108 not out. St Johns Tecoma finally broke a string of 24 games without a win dismissing Mountain Gate for 89, Kyle Grenda’s six wickets the best performance of the game. — Roy Ward and Ian Harley

FTGDCA Norm Reeves Shield Norm Reeves Shield Belgrave 210 d Upwey Tecoma 114 (Bianchi 34; Vozzo 7-48) Upper Gully 5-318 (P Henry 80, A Slack 103, M McDonald 43, J Colee 44no) d The Basin 297 (Bowyer 122, Porch 58; Colee 6-61) Eildon Park 259 d Ferntree Gully 9-187 (J Henry 61, M Farrukh 50; S Pimm 7-33) Knox Gardens 6-128 (B McLean 31 S Small 34) d FTG Footballers 116 Johnson Park 5-179 (A Dobb 56) d Knoxfield 148 Decoite Shield Monbulk 1-217 (B Walter 108no, T Watson 79) d Rowville 212 Lysterfield 8-177 (S Alston 39; R Hill 4-66) d South Belgrave 175 St Johns Tecoma 170 d Mt Gate 89 (Grenda 6-38, Lovell 3-16) and 0-56 Norm Reeves Shield Ladder: Upwey-Tecoma 54 points, 1.72 per cent; Eildon Park 54, 1.41; Upper Ferntree Gully 54, 1.25; Johnson Park 48, 1.12; Ferntree Gully 36, 1.06; Ferntree Gully Footballers 30, 0.88; Knox Gardens 30, 0.84; Belgrave 24, 0.74; Knoxfield 18, 0.73; The Basin 12, 0.68.

February 27, 2013 KNOX WEEKLY – YOUR COMMUNITY VOICE

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