Honour for footy family


Stephen Epis, of High Wycombe, with a picture of his grandfather Frank Murphy who was  inducted into the Collingwood Hall of Fame. Picture: David Baylis        www.communitypix.com.au   d451022
Stephen Epis, of High Wycombe, with a picture of his grandfather Frank Murphy who was inducted into the Collingwood Hall of Fame. Picture: David Baylis        www.communitypix.com.au d451022

The father of one did not accept the award for himself but rather for his late grandfather, Collingwood legend Frank Murphy.

Along with brother Len, Frank was inducted into AFL club Collingwood’s Hall of Fame.

The pair join an illustrious list of Magpie greats from the past century.

“I’m very proud to be there representing Frank. It’s a massive honour to be inducted,” Mr Epis said.

Mr Epis was joined at the Collingwood season launch by his family, who also travelled from Perth.

“I almost didn’t get to come. I was in Malaysia at the time mum got the phone call, so originally I didn’t get a ticket,” he said.

“But we managed to kick someone off so I could come.”

Frank and Len Murphy were integral parts of the Magpies’ highest achieving team of all time, which won the premiership four years in a row from 1927 to 1930.

Frank Murphy played for Collingwood from the age of just 20 and notched up 145 games in his 10 years with the club.

Frank moved to WA after World War II, where he was a big part of the Subiaco Football Club as a player and coach.

“He captained and coached Subi when he first moved to WA,” Mr Epis said.

“He was a good, clean player; his position was centre half forward and was a valuable goal kicker.

“Len was more of a burly, strong unit who played half forward as well as in the ruck.”

Mr Epis said his grandfather’s successful career had influenced him to play football as a youngster.

“I played until I was about 24. I was with East Perth and then played in local footy leagues in Bunbury and Belmont,” he said.

Although he no longer plays, Mr Epis said he still helped out with coaching.

In keeping with family tradition, he follows Collingwood too.

“It resonates deeply that they still want to recognise these guys, and I find it amazing that they are inducting Frank and Len some 80 years later,” he said.

“I find it really fascinating they were inducted after so long into something where they don’t have anyone lobbying for them.

“They only induct so many players each year and it’s just fantastic.”