The birth of a new club (1929-1962)

The original incarnation of Western Suburbs participated in the top tier of organised football in Sydney between 1926 and 1929. We reached the grand final in our debut year, losing to Eastern Suburbs. However, the club was forced to disband at the end of the 1929 season when it was unable to meet its running costs.

The club was reformed in November 1947 and took part in the NSWANFL the following year, when it finished sixth in an eight team competition, as well as providing the Phelan Medallist in the shape of its captain-coach Keith Champion, who had won the same award the previous year with North Shore.

Western Suburbs’ improvement was gradual. The side finished 5th in 1949 and, in 1950, reached the major round for the first time before going out in the 1st semi final. In 1951, however, the Magpies came of age with a 12 point grand final defeat of an Eastern Suburbs side that would go on to dominate most of the remainder of the decade. Western Suburbs reached four further grand finals during the 1950s, losing them all.

The powerhouse club (1963-1977)

During the 1960s and 1970s Western Suburbs was far and away the strongest club in Sydney. Between 1963 and 1969 it was an ever present in the NSWANFL grand final, winning four times and losing three. After dropping to 3rd in 1970 the Magpies eked out a similar tale of success in the ’70s, missingonly one further grand final for the decade (that of 1976) to annex another four flags. However, since the last of these, in 1977, the club’s fortunes have declined, with an isolated premiership in 1996 the only cause for celebration.

Over the years Western Suburbs has fielded a large number of high quality players, with AFL stars Greg Stafford and Paul Bevan arguably the cream of its recent products. It reached the finals in 2002, giving cause for tentative optimism about the immediate future, but then slipped back into the field the following year, finishing second from last in 2003. Then 2004 was an improved season where the Magpies ended winning 7 games under coach Kevin Eynaud.

The 2005 season brought a marked improvement as the Magpies lost only 1 of 16 minor round matches to secure the minor premiership. This was followed by a comfortable 43 point 2nd semi final defeat of Pennant Hills, earning the side warm favouritism going into its grand final clash with North Shore. Inexplicably, however, when the pressure intensified during the second half, the Magpies found themselves unable to cope, and ended up slumping to a 41 point loss.

The side again qualified for the finals in 2006, but hopes of a flag were dashed at the preliminary final stage by Pennant Hills.

The last decade has seen a great deal of work redeveloping Picken Oval, as well as three Under 19s Division 2 premierships from 2014-16.

With third grade winning a premiership in 2017 Wests hunger for success begun to grow. Unfortunately with a few key players leaving our 2018 squad and a restructure of the Sydney AFL competition Western Suburbs failed to take home any silverware for the 2018 Season

men and women become one (2019-present)

2019 saw a new alliance with the women’s team (Western Wolves) we’ve now become one. With new hope and optimism Wests will soon be marching through the pack and back contending for finals. In 2019, the Magpies won the under 19’s grand final through a joint venture with Parramatta Goanna’s going undefeated for the whole season

With another year under the belt, it’s now time to see the magpies soar up the table in 2020 with the new acquisition of Ben Klemke for the men. Arron Convery has added experience to the women’s brigade also through GWS player Bec Privitelli jumping on board as an assistant coach & John Parker coaching the Women’s reserves.

Go Magpies!

Nick Miller

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Adam Cheise

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Mike Stuart

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