A Frenchman Who Loves His Footy – Jeff Jouffret

Rabbitohs Radio Global Ambassador Jeff Jouffret from France has been hooked on rugby league since the age of 13. Jeff played the game & was a avid fan of the Winfield Cup – a competition played on the other side of the world in the land down under.

The story of how Jeff Jouffret & Steve Mavin became friends is an incredible one involving Jeffs’ love of footy, VHS tapes, the ‘Mavin Show’ & a chance meeting near Waverley Cemetery.

The following is Jeffs’ story in his own words..

Jeff Jouffret

My name is Jeff Jouffret & I am from Avignon in the south of France.

I started playing rugby league for my local club Sporting Olympique Avignon Bisons known as SOA13 as a 6 year old to follow my older brothers.

My Rep Honours were: France B vs Australia 1990 in Lyon. Presidents 13 vs PNG 1991 in Carpentras. France vs Russia 1991 in Paris France. World Sevens Sydney 92 & 93. I played for Wyong Roos lower grades in Australia 1992-93-94.

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Steve Mavin is one of my oldest friends on Facebook, many years ago when I first got on Facebook on the section “do you know..” I saw Steve Mavin, we must have had a friend in common and I asked him, are you the former Rabbitoh Steve Mavin? He said yes I am and we became Facebook friends.

In 2016 I visited Australia with my family to see old friends from my Wyong days and former players who played for Avignon since the eighties, and on the Bondi walk by the cemetery I bumped into Steve whom I recognized but had never actually met before, that was quite a shock and I asked my question again, Steve? And he said yes! That was something special to bump into each other like that.

Back in the eighties we didn’t have any coverage of the then Winfield Cup in France and the only way we could watch games was on VHS tapes sent by air mail from Australia by some Australian import players’ families and friends and those tapes were hot properties. I remember passing them on at training like it was gold between each other, waiting for the next training session to in turn get hold of the treasure. Games were 2 or 3 months old but it didn’t matter, it was all new and exotic for us. New teams, new colors, mascots which was unheard of in France.

One of the games we got to watch and share was the infamous 1987 semi final where poor old Mavo got bombed out of the game by the Raiders at the SCG, so everyone in Avignon was sharing what we called the “Mavin Show” amongst other games of course, and that is how this great Rabbitoh man was sadly known in and around town. Sorry Mavo.

Steve Mavin

The famous Parramatta Eels was the most popular team in France back then, my first ever match was the 1981 grand final. I remember watching that game on a black and white small tv screen sitting on the floor during a rugby camp we used to go to during school holidays (the tv system back then in France was different to the one used in Australia PAL or SECAM and most of the first tapes came out in black & white) and I remember being one of the few staying until fulltime with the adults when all the others went to bed, I was 13. Must have been when I got hooked on the game.

Unlike nearly everyone I know in Australia I never really had a team I grew up supporting more than others, I was not brought up in any Sydney suburb, my family had never heard of rugby league in Sydney and I only found out about the game in Australia aged 13 in the eighties, and in the south of France. What I do know is that the first team I watched and liked because of that formidable backline was the Parramatta Eels.

I later did my studies on the game in Australia and discovered every other team, as well as the Brisbane competition. I started following the Winfield Cup. I actually liked all teams, I liked the game, the grounds and the competition, all this was new to me. Later I liked the obvious big teams of the 80’s, Manly, Balmain, never really liked the Dogs because they beat the Eels, then I liked Souths, Norths, Easts, Wests as it was very cardinal to me and made me discover Sydney geographically.

Penrith toured France in 1988 under Ron Willey & I remember swapping with MG in a Le Pontet dressing room, (I still have that PENRITH CITY t shirt), and taking a photo with Col Bentley.

I like Cronulla and the beach suburb, St George and its history, and the out of town BHP Illawarra Steelers (who sadly disappeared for me since the merger) and Jim Woodger’s lime green Raiders. I studied all teams’ history, why each mascot, grounds, suburbs, famous players, stories…I used to draw a map of Sydney metropolitan area where I would pinpoint every team and suburb, I remember odd things like Balmain playing at Leichhardt Oval which was in fact in Lilyfield, Manly playing in Brookvale and not Manly, Canterbury and Bankstown forming the Bulldogs and playing in Belmore.

I made excel with each team, mascots, grounds, major sponsors, and I used to draw jerseys on my school books during my time in school. I kept those to this day with famous sponsors of the eighties, Hardie’s, VICTA, Penfolds Wines, 100 Pipers, Smiths Crisps, Alpha Micro Computers, AVCO Finance to name a few.

Later I liked and followed the Rabbitohs because they were a foundation club, representing the historical inner Sydney suburb and I got behind the club when all the drama of 1999 happened.

I followed the Raiders when I first visited Australia in 1989 because my friend and host former Avignon prop Jim Antonakos was from the nations capital. We attended the GF at the SFS that year. In 1992 when I came to Sydney with the French side for the World Sevens we trained at Redfern Oval, and I met who was under the Reggie the rabbit mascot, a lovely very small man who was the right size to fit into the mascot.

Reg Fridd aka Reggie Rabbit

Later I moved to Wyong thanks to another former Avignon player Tony Keevill, who played for Balmain in 84, and later also was assistant coach to Ken Shine for the Rabbitohs so there is another Rabbitoh link. Later Dean Amos another former Avignon and Wyong legend also played for the Bunnies in the 1995 CANON jerseys.

Blake Solly

Blake Solly is also a Rabbitoh connection, I met Central Coast boy Blake in England when he worked for the RFL when my brother Christophe was then CEO of the Catalans Dragons. Good to see old players like the Rabbitoh podcast team keeping the flame alive and linking the community of this great historical club. Like everything the sport of Rugby League changes and it’s nice for us who experienced the old times to remember and commemorate, share stories and pay tribute to the greatest game of all. Congratulations to the team and long live the podcast and the Rabbitohs. Glory Glory.

By Jeff Jouffret

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Campbell Graham, Ernie Hammerton & the Silvertails

On the podcast this week we recap the Storm loss, interview Campbell Graham, Remember A Rabbitoh Ernie Hammerton & preview this Saturdays clash with Manly.

Campbell Graham #1136

Watch Campbell Grahams 1st try here
Anthony Maroon & Darren Brown feeling the love at The Juniors Kingsford
Souths fan Darren Lindsay at The Juniors Kingsford
A couple of Rabbitohs in PNG, photo supplied by our Global Ambassador Naisa Boga
The Legends Lounge at The Juniors Kingsford

Global Ambassadors 🌏

1 Ryan McGee Virginia USA

2 Tim Mason Toronto Canada

3 Bec Eakin Port Macquarie NSW

4 Nathan Rugby League Guru Sydney

5 Luke Carroll Sydney

6 Scott Brooks Wollongong

7 Paul Brown Sanur Bali

8 Jonathan Davies aka The Welsh Wiz UK

9 Brendan Tillitzki Central Coast

10 Mike Simpson Brisbane

11 Jack Kingsley Vancouver Canada

12 Belen Ugarte Chile

13 Naisa Boga PNG

14 Brent Foster La Jolla California

15 Jeff Jouffret Avignon France

16 Tony Dunne Kitzbühel Austria

4 Rabbits in the ‘Bali Burrow’ Mavo, Paul Brown, Waz & Hoko at the Happy Room grand opening Sanur, Bali on the 8th of January 2020

A Frenchman Who Loves His Footy – Jeff Jouffret

Ernie Hammerton #357

This week our Remembering A Rabbitoh is Souths legend Ernie Hammerton.

Ernie Hammerton was a Souths’ hooker who played in seven consecutive premiership deciders (1949-55), winning premierships in 1950-51 and 1953-55. After making his debut for NSW in 1951 Hammerton made his only Test appearance against France in Brisbane. In 1956 he forced his way back into the NSW side and toured with the Kangaroos (11 matches, no Tests). On retirement he pursued a career as a selector, starting out on the Metropolitan and State panels in 1965. Hammerton served for 18 years as an Australian selector (1970-88) before standing down several years before his death in 1991. – ALAN WHITICKER

The Rabbitohs Podcast Network

Top 4 Podcast

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Gary Wright, Ian Moir & The Storm

On the show this week we recap the Charity Shield win in Mudgee, chat to former Rabbitoh Gary Wright, our Remembering A Rabbitoh is Ian Moir & we preview the season opening clash with the Melbourne Storm.

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Charity Shield Rabbitohs 48 – Dragons 16

Global Ambassadors

We’ve appointed 2 more Global Ambassadors this week, Scott Brooks from Wollongong & Luke Carroll. Welcome aboard boys! Scott & Luke join Ryan in the USA, Tim in Canada, Bec in Port Macquarie & Nathan in Sydney bringing our total to 6 with more to come. In breaking news we have also added The Welsh Wiz Jonathan Davies in the UK & Paul Brown from ‘The Bali Burrow’ The Happy Room in Bali to our lineup.

Gary Wright #623

Ian Moir #408

Rest In Peace Bobcat.

Round 1 Storm v Rabbitohs

Spotlight On The Pathways

Connect, Respect and Resilience Program

Welcome Rabbitohs Fans! Use code RABBITOHS15 at checkout to save 15% off select hotels available through wotif.com/rabbitohs

RABBITOHS CURRENT MEMBERS – 28,930 – MEMBERS TARGET – 30,000

OUR SPONSORS

The Rabbitohs Podcast Network, Joe O’Callaghan & Ivan Jones

We’re proud to announce that Rabbitohs Radio Podcast has been included in the newly created Rabbitohs Podcast Network. It’s a sensational development for us because it now means that we’re an official South Sydney Rabbitohs Football Club podcast & become part of the Rabbitohs family. Click the link below to read the full announcement. 

https://rabbitohsradio.com.au/2021/02/20/the-rabbitohs-podcast-network/

Rabbitohs Media Day

Latrell Mitchell announcing his re-signing to the media at Redfern Oval.
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Spotlight On The Pathways #SpotlightOnThePathways

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Around the Grounds | Junior Reps Rd 3

Joe O’Callaghan – Rabbitohs Head of Elite Pathways & Player Development

Tweed move fits well for O’Callaghan

Perfect Partnership for Pathways Program at Rabbitohs

Remembering A Rabbitoh Ivan William Jones #532

With thanks to Rabbitohs Historian Brad Ryder

We’d like to thank Ivans granddaughter Magenta for recording the intro for this segment & also her mum Ivans daugher Katrina & her sister Mel for allowing us access to their dads incredible collection.

Katrina told us “dad never collected any of this stuff so it wasn’t until he passed away that we discovered many of these pictures & news articles. We are glad that Rabbitohs Radio are able to show what we have instead of it just sitting in the cupboard.

Ivan Jones shows off his number 7 jumper in 2014
Ivans daughter Katrina shows off her Rabbitohs tattoo with dads number #532
Gary Stevens & John ‘Lurch’ O’Neill nicknamed Ivan Jones ‘Ivan Skavinski Skavar’

NRL NEWS

NRL 2021: South Sydney primed to win NRL crown but entering final year of premiership window, claims Cooper Cronk

Your say: Which team has the best backline?

OUR VALUED SPONSORS

The Rabbitohs Podcast Network

We’re proud to announce that Rabbitohs Radio Podcast has been included in the newly created Rabbitohs Podcast Network. It’s a sensational development for us because it now means that we’re an official South Sydney Rabbitohs Football Club podcast & become part of the Rabbitohs family. 

Our podcast will be one of four weekly podcasts in the network, each one will be different to the other. Our show will remain the same & still have all the content, interviews, segments etc that we’ve been presenting so far. The big difference is that now the Rabbitohs will be putting their considerable resources into promoting & distributing our show along with the other 3 podcasts under the same banner which is a massive upgrade for us. 

We always thought that our show would fit perfectly with the clubs professional media team & now that has become a reality. The amount of people that the Rabbitohs website, socials & members correspondence reach far surpasses the total followers that we’ve built to date. This fact alone should gain us a wider audience & that’s been our goal since day 1 – to be heard by South Sydney fans everywhere. 

All our socials & followers will remain as will our various groups & pages but we look forward to working more closely with all the Rabbitohs fans, players, coaches, staff & sponsors.

Another point worth noting is that we aren’t in competition with the other 3 podcasts. Those shows will in no way take anything away from ours, we’ll actually enhance each other. We believe that the other shows will give listeners extra Rabbitohs content & give you the listener more quality club related audio to download once they’ve finished listening to us (or vice versa).

The Rabbitohs Podcast Network is a first in Australian sports history & marks a turning point in the evolution of digital media in this country. We are absolutely delighted to say that we played a part in making that happen.

We’ll give you more details on the other 3 podcasts as they are released but we can reveal that one of those will be a ‘Top 4’ podcast hosted by Jeremy Monahan, Mark Ellison, Shannon Donato & a special weekly guest. It’s going to be a winner with that talented lineup!

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Rabbitohs Radio Podcast – Connecting The Rabbitohs Community – Christmas Special

We’re back! It’s the off season but the Rabbitohs Radio Podcast team has returned to the studio for a Christmas special. On the show we recap this years State Of Origin series, kick of our new Spotlight on the Pathways segment, we chat to John Sutton & Al Daly from Banabi Water in the studio, our Remembering a Rabbitoh is Nathan Merritt & we name our Rabbitoh of the Week. Music in this episode is courtesy of Perry Keyes.

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The Banabi Story

Banabi has been used for generations by the Dharawal speaking people of coastal Sydney to describe a place of fresh water.  The “birthplace” of European settlement at Circular Quay was chosen for its fresh water source. This was called the Tank stream. The traditional name for this stream is Banabi.

Nathan Merritt #974 – South Sydney Player Report

With special thanks to Souths historian Brad Ryder

Top Moments – Nathan Merritt’s Record Career Tries

Rabbitohs Radio Podcast LinkedIn

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John Sutton #1020 – South Sydney Player Report

Captain in Focus: John Sutton

We Have Moved To The Rabbitohs Podcast Network RABBITOHS RADIO

Rabbitohs Radio have moved to the Rabbitohs Podcast Network so you'll no longer find our new episodes here. Please make the switch with us & subscribe or follow our new location. We've provided all the links you need below. Thanks for listening & we'll see you at our new home where we have a new episode 'Gary Wright, Ian Moir & The Storm' coming soon. Website – https://www.rabbitohs.com.au/podcasts/rabbitohs-radio/ Apple – https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/rabbitohs-podcast-network/id1554791262 Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/4zHauDZbitlibvcvsJXA9P
  1. We Have Moved To The Rabbitohs Podcast Network
  2. Rabbitohs Radio Podcast – Connecting The Rabbitohs Community – Christmas Special
  3. Les Bridge, Chris Smith, Ash Harrison, Kye & the Rabbitohs
  4. Jed Cartwright, Freddy, Bernie & the Panthers
  5. Damien Cook, Michael Cleary & The Eels

Vale Ron Duffy

Spotlight on the Pathways

Our newest segment Spotlight on the Pathways is brought to you courtesy of Joe OCallaghan from the Rabbitohs.

Joe says “Through joining our resources with the Juniors, in partnership together our new Elite Pathways and Player Development (EPPD) program consists of the following key focus areas:

  1. Integration of training of all our pathways playing squads including U/17 Harold Matthews Cup, U/19 SG Ball, U/21 Jersey Flegg, our part time NSW Cup and Harvey Norman Womens Squads. This training is all based out of Erskineville Oval EPPD program training facility and all staff are following a whole EPPD coaching framework for consistent delivery. In total involves approx. 160 players and 45 staff.
  1. In 2021 we will also be running our inaugural ‘Black Rabbits Elite Player Development (EPD) Squad. This group will consist of approx. 20 players specifically chosen from all of our pathways squads (based on age, playing position etc) this will also include 3 – 4 female players who are either playing at or have aspirations for Australian Jilaroos level. This group all have individual annual development plans tracked by staff at the club and are involved in once a month training at the Redfern facility with NRL coaching staff.
  1. We are also running an annual professional development program for all of our staff that are involved in our EPPD program.
  1. We are also running a full wellbeing and education program (which is all on top of the mandatory programs set by the NRL) which includes a minimum of 8 hours a season of face to face time with NRL wellbeing staff and external presenters. This also includes topics and presentations targeted specifically at our staff within the program for their own needs.”

Order Rabbitohs Radio Podcast Glasses

We are taking orders for our special edition Rabbitohs Radio Podcast glasses now. Glasses are hand made by a small Aussie business RBG Stickers so the price is the same whether you buy one or more.

$30 per glass – Bank Transfer – PayPal – Local pickup or delivery is preferred but if postage is required add $13.60 for 1 glass (total $43.60) or $15 for 2 glasses (total $75)

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Les Bridge, Chris Smith, Ash Harrison, Kye & the Rabbitohs.

On our final show for the season we recap the loss to the Panthers, speak to The Everest winning trainer Les Bridge, radio personality Chris Smith & super fan Kye Porrier, our Remembering A Rabbitoh is Ashley Harrison, we preview the NRL Grand Final & name our Rabbitoh Of The Week.

Mikey Siciliano

Les Bridge

Trainer’s classic quip sums up Legend’s stunning win

Chris Smith

The Chris Smith Show

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South coast ride on my Bonne.

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Ashley Harrison #989 – South Sydney Player Report

Kye Porrier

Our Rabbitohs Radio Sponsors

Les Bridge holds The Everest trophy aloft after Classique Legend bolted in

Jed Cartwright, Freddy, Bernie & the Panthers

On the show this week we speak to Rabbitohs rookie Jed Cartwright, go behind enemy lines with Brad ‘Freddy’ Fittler, our Remembering A Rabbitoh is Bernie Purcell & we examine the prelim final clash with the Panthers.

Jed Cartwright #1163 – South Sydney Player Report

Jed Cartwright Signs for 2021-23

Seek and you shall find: Cartwright’s career revival

Merv Cartwright – Panthers mourn a legend

Jed Cartwright Rugby League Project

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Happy Father's Day old man

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Brad Fittler

Brad Fittler Wikipedia

Bernard Martin “Bernie” Purcell #388 – South Sydney Player Report

On This Day: Bernie Purcell became the first forward to score 1,000 points

‘One Zoom a week’: How Wayne rebooted Rabbits by barely coaching

Classique Legend sizzles in Shorts

We Have Moved To The Rabbitohs Podcast Network RABBITOHS RADIO

Rabbitohs Radio have moved to the Rabbitohs Podcast Network so you'll no longer find our new episodes here. Please make the switch with us & subscribe or follow our new location. We've provided all the links you need below. Thanks for listening & we'll see you at our new home where we have a new episode 'Gary Wright, Ian Moir & The Storm' coming soon. Website – https://www.rabbitohs.com.au/podcasts/rabbitohs-radio/ Apple – https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/rabbitohs-podcast-network/id1554791262 Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/4zHauDZbitlibvcvsJXA9P
  1. We Have Moved To The Rabbitohs Podcast Network
  2. Rabbitohs Radio Podcast – Connecting The Rabbitohs Community – Christmas Special
  3. Les Bridge, Chris Smith, Ash Harrison, Kye & the Rabbitohs
  4. Jed Cartwright, Freddy, Bernie & the Panthers
  5. Damien Cook, Michael Cleary & The Eels

Brendan Tillitzki saw Chaps at the footy & said “what’s doin boys?”
Sam, Rabbitoh Warrior, Kylie & Donna

Damien Cook, Michael Cleary & The Eels

On the podcast this week we speak to Rabbitohs hooker Damien Cook, our Remembering A Rabbitoh is Michael Cleary & we preview Saturdays semi final clash with the Eels.

Damien Cook

“If my mind can conceive it and my heart can believe it, my body can achieve it.”

Damien Cook #1117 – South Sydney Player Report

Cook rises from the canvas after living Ali’s inspirational words

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Cheers to the Botany Fireys 🔥

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Michael Cleary

Michael Cleary – Sport Australia Hall Of Fame

Michael Cleary AO (Officer Of The Order Of Australia) was Inducted as an Athlete Member into The Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 1999 for his contribution to the sports of rugby union, rugby league and athletics. He is one of only four Australians who have represented their country at full international level in three different sports.

Michael Arthur “Mike” Cleary #488 – South Sydney Player Report

Our Rabbitohs Radio Sponsors

We Have Moved To The Rabbitohs Podcast Network RABBITOHS RADIO

Rabbitohs Radio have moved to the Rabbitohs Podcast Network so you'll no longer find our new episodes here. Please make the switch with us & subscribe or follow our new location. We've provided all the links you need below. Thanks for listening & we'll see you at our new home where we have a new episode 'Gary Wright, Ian Moir & The Storm' coming soon. Website – https://www.rabbitohs.com.au/podcasts/rabbitohs-radio/ Apple – https://podcasts.apple.com/au/podcast/rabbitohs-podcast-network/id1554791262 Spotify – https://open.spotify.com/show/4zHauDZbitlibvcvsJXA9P
  1. We Have Moved To The Rabbitohs Podcast Network
  2. Rabbitohs Radio Podcast – Connecting The Rabbitohs Community – Christmas Special
  3. Les Bridge, Chris Smith, Ash Harrison, Kye & the Rabbitohs
  4. Jed Cartwright, Freddy, Bernie & the Panthers
  5. Damien Cook, Michael Cleary & The Eels