Former Hanoi Swans Prez, Willy, reflects on Sydney’s Premiership from a Vietnam Swans’ perspective
Posted by Vietnam Swans on October 1, 2012
Former Hanoi President, Mark “Willy” Williams, a North Melbourne supporter, wrote to the National President, Phil Johns, a Hawthorn supporter, about the Sydney Swans winning the Grand Final on the weekend. Below is an edited extract.
What an amaz’n game of footy… and, seriously, bad luck with the result. The Hawkers had a great year and were very unlucky.
I guess, in a way, mix’d emotions for yourself ’cause, as you of all people know, the Sydney boys have been amaz’n for the Vietnam Swannies over the years. At the end of the day, the Swannies have been very fortunate to have many generous supporters of the Club. Many have come and gone but the Sydney Swans have been there from the start even giving us those famous Foster’s tops for our first tournament (see photos of the Hanoi Swans wearing Sydney Swans tops, with a big Fosters logo on the front, playing our first international in 2003).
This morn’n, I bought a copy of the newspaper… and saw two great images: Bobby Skilton, and the other of Ryan O’Keefe.
[Ed's note. Bobby Skilton first found out about the Hanoi Swans circa 2002/3 when his niece returned from a holiday to Vietnam. His niece reported, much to Bobby's disbelief, that she had discovered a Bobby Skilton Room above Pepperonis Pizza Restaurant in Hanoi which was occupied by the Hanoi Swans. "On the Couch" would be held prior to Friday night football on the TV. Click to see the You Tube video.
[Then, in 2005, a photo of the Hanoi Swans appeared in Bobby's home on top of his bar next to a miniature, replica, 2005 Premiership Cup.
[In 2010, a number of Swannies were lucky enough to meet him when the Sydney Swans invited us to a pre match function at the MCG (click here for story).]
And I have to admit bein’ really happy to see Ryan O’Keefe get the BOG.
When I met him in Hanoi in October 2010 and he offered me a bia or two, and even an autograph for a Swannies’ top, he came across as a very humble bloke genuinely interested in the proud history of the Swannies.
I guess, in many ways, the Vietnam Swans’ history mirrors the Sydney Swans though we still need to win the Asian Champs which, by the looks of things, ain’t too far away!!
- Vietnam Swans go to the MCG with the Sydney Swans, July 2010
- Photos from Sydney Swans, Vietnam Swans, Vietnam Veterans and Southern Dragons, MCG, July 2010
- Willy meets O’Keefe on the Crouch at JASPAS, Hanoi, October 2010
- Saigon Times reports on Ryan O’Keefe’s tour in Vietnam to raise money for charity.
- Photos from Hanoi Invitational Cup, Hanoi, November, 2003