Happy Easter – Faces In The Crowd

On this Easter long weekend the Rabbitohs TV team hope you have a great four day break filled with fun, footy, quality time with family and friends plus lots of chocolates, preferably Darrell Lea.

In this article we’ve added some of our favourite Rabbitohs crowd shots.

Happy Easter!
Souths fan, Rabbitohs v Sharks, Telstra Stadium, Sun 24th of June 2007. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Red & Green boy, Rabbitohs v Roosters, Sydney Olympic Stadium, Saturday September 1st 2007. Digital image Colin Whelan.
A young Panther & Rabbit, Rabbitohs v Panthers at Aussie Stadium, Sunday July 11th, 2004. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Raiders, Canberra Stadium, Sunday 25th April 2010. Digital image Renee McKay.
Fist pump, Rabbitohs v Sydney Roosters, ANZ Stadium Thursday 6th March 2014. Digital image Grant Trouville.
I love South Sydney! Rabbitohs v Sea Eagles, Sydney Olympic Stadium, Monday August 20th 2007. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Why so serious? Bulldogs v Souths, ANZ Stadium Sunday 20th March 2011. Digital image Renee Mckay.
Souths girl & bunny, Rabbitohs v Sea Eagles, Sydney Olympic Stadium, Saturday May 2nd 2010. Digital image Colin Whelan.
The Burrow, Raiders v South Sydney Rabbitohs at Canberra Stadium, Sunday August 14th 2011. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Souths boy, Rabbitohs v Eels, SFS, Monday August 8th 2011. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Souths fans, Titans v Rabbitohs, Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast, Saturday 30th May 2015. Digital image Scott Davis.
Souths fan, Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast, Saturday 30th May 2015. Digital image Scott Davis.
Baby Rabbit, Rabbitohs v Bulldogs, Stadium Australia, August 2nd 2009.
Red & Green girl, Titans v Rabbitohs, Robina, Saturday July 27th 2013. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Rabbit ladies, Rabbitohs v Canberra Raiders, ANZ Stadium, Saturday September 15th 2012. Digital image Renee McKay.
Rabbitohs v Knights Bluetongue Stadium, Sunday 29th March 2009. Digital image Saba Saleh.
Mum & daughter, Souths v Dragons, ANZ Stadium Sat 21st July 2012. Digital image Renee McKay.
Rabbitohs fan, Rabbitohs v Roosters, ANZ Stadium, Sunday March 15th 2015. Digital image Robb Cox.
Souths Fans, NYC Titans v Rabbitohs Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast, Saturday May 30th 2015. Digital image Kylie Cox.
Souths signs, Sharks v Rabbitohs, Toyota Stadium Sunday 3rd July 2011. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Souths fan, Rabbitohs v Dragons, ANZ Stadium Monday 15th April 2011. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Dragons, Charity Shield, ANZ Stadium, 28th February 2009. Digital image Robb Cox.
Happy Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Warriors, Perth, Saturday June 7th 2014. Photo by Colin Whelan.
Number 1, Souths v Storm, ANZ Stadium, Saturday 13th April 2013. Photo Renee McKay.
Souths fans, Roosters v Rabbitohs, Allianz Stadium, Thursday 7th March 2013. Photo Renee McKay.
Souths fan, Rabbitohs v Roosters, Sydney Football Stadium, Sunday 15 March 2009. Digital image Renee McKay.
Warriors v Rabbitohs, Mt Smart, Sunday May 23rd 2010. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Souths fan, Rabbitohs v Manly Warringah, Blue Tongue Stadium, Gosford, Friday 16th August 2013. Photo Renee McKay.
Return to Redfern 7th February 2010, Souths v Manly at Redfern Oval. Image Renee McKay.
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Souths fan, Rabbitohs v Sydney Roosters, ANZ Stadium Thursday 6th March 2014. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Souths fan, Rabbitohs v Bulldogs, Sydney Olympic Stadium, Friday August 23rd 2013. Digital image Colin Whelan.
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Souths boys, Rabbitohs v Dragons, ANZ Stadium, Saturday August 29th 2009. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Sydney Roosters, ANZ Stadium Thursday 6th March 2014. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Michelle Clark (Jasons’ mum) Rabbitohs v Sea Eagles, Sydney Olympic Stadium, Saturday May 2nd 2010. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Dragons, ANZ Stadium, Saturday August 29th 2009. Digital Image Grant Trouville.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Dragons, ANZ Stadium, Saturday August 29th 2009. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Rabbitohs fans, Titans v Rabbitohs, Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast, Saturday 30th May 2015. Digital image Scott Davis.
Sam or Stacey? Rabbitohs v Manly Warringah, Blue Tongue Stadium, Gosford, Friday 16th August 2013. Photo Renee McKay.
Rabbitohs v Raiders, Cairns, Sunday April 26th 2015. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Premiership Grand Final, Rabbitohs v Bulldogs at ANZ Stadium Sydney, Sunday 5th October 2014. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Souths fan, Charity Shield, Rabbitohs v Dragons, Wollongong, Saturday February 22 2013. Digital image Colin Whelan.
Souths fans, Titans v Rabbitohs, Cbus Super Stadium, Gold Coast, Saturday 30th May 2015. Digital image Scott Davis.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Bulldogs, ANZ Stadium Monday April 5th 2010. Digital image Grant Trouville
Souths fan, Tigers v Rabbitohs, Leichhardt Oval, Sun 26th Aug 2007. Digital image Grant Trouville
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Bulldogs, Aussie Stadium, Sunday July 31st 2005. Digital image Johnathon Ng.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Roosters at ANZ Stadium, Sunday March 15th 2015. Digital image Robb Cox.
Souths fans, Titans v Rabbitohs, Robina, Saturday, May 10th 2014. Photo Colin Whelan.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Wests Tigers, ANZ Stadium Sunday 22nd 2015. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Happy lady, Rabbitohs v Sydney Roosters, ANZ Stadium Thursday 6th of March 2014. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Super boy, Rabbitohs v Sydney Roosters, ANZ Stadium Thursday 6th March 2014. Digital image Grant Trouville.
Rabbitoh boy, Rabbitohs v Sydney Roosters, ANZ Stadium Thursday 6th March 2014. Digital image by Grant Trouville.
Souths fans, Rabbitohs v Cowboys, Sydney Olympic Stadium, Friday May 11th 2013. Digital image Colin Whelan.
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By Steve Mavin

Adam Peek – A Rugby League Journeyman

By Steve Mavin

In a career that began in 1997 and ended in the UK in 2011, Adam Peek played for 7 different rugby league clubs. One of those teams was the Rabbitohs in 2002 (first grade player #959).

Adam played in the historic first match after reinstatement when Souths met the Roosters in round 1, coming off the bench in front of 35,316 fans at the Sydney Football Stadium on the 15th of March 2002.

Adam Peek – Newcastle v Souths at Energy Australia Stadim, Sunday May 26th 2002. (Image Colin Whelan)

Prior to his arrival at Redfern, Adam spent 3 years at the Bulldogs and his dad John Peek also played for Souths (#639) and the Doggies making this father and son a rare duo who have both represented the same two clubs at the elite level.

Chaps, Browny and myself all work with now 44 year old ‘Peeky’ on the Port Botany waterfront, he’s a great bloke, a workmate who is always up for a chat, a family man and proud dad.

We caught up with Peeky at work for a chat

10 years after retirement the former forward is still looking fit and he’s a big unit too standing 190cm (6ft 3in) and weighing in over 100kg.

For the record Adam Peek made 179 appearances in the top grade scoring 10 tries. In the NRL his clubs were Adelaide, Bulldogs, Rabbitohs, Eels, Dragons, Sharks and Crusaders in the Super League…more clubs than Greg Norman!

Listen to our John Peek feature

Mr There and Back: How Col Whelan got hitched to Souths, photography and life on the road

Colin Whelan was a rugby league photographer for 34 years. He’s also an author, traveller and brilliant story-teller. Steve Mavin, co-host of the Rabbitohs Radio Podcast, so enjoyed listening to Col’s yarns on the show that he wrote up a yarn so good it needs three parts. This is the first one. It begins with Whelan hitch-hiking across Australia, ends with a favour from “Break Even” Bill Mordey. Enjoy the ride. 

During my career playing for the Rabbitohs in the late 80s and early 90s, Col Whelan was always on the sideline taking pictures. 

Although I’d say hello we never really got to know each other, and it’s only since he joined our Facebook group Rabbitohs Radio Podcast Listeners that we began to regularly communicate. 

Col has also graciously shared many old Souths images from his lifetime behind the lens, and we’ve been lapping up the interesting commentary it generates.

The Rabbitohs Radio Podcast team – Grant ChappellDarren Brown and myself – interviewed Col in our studio in June. As soon as our chat began we knew it was going to be a great one.

And while it’s very hard to do justice to telling the stories of a master story-teller, I’m going to have a crack.

Colin Whelan was born in Sydney in 1951 but grew up without rugby league in Adelaide and then in Perth. In 1963 the Whelan family moved back to Sydney, lived in Kensington and Col enrolled at Sydney Boys High where in 1964 he discovered rugby and rugby league.

And hitch-hiking.

Col started hitching from an early age after being inspired by Jack Kerouac‘s On The Road. Aged 13, to honour a bet with a mate, Col stuck out his thumb to see if he could hitch rides from Sydney to Perth and back. He completed the feat in eleven days. He had his mother’s blessing.

The adventure instilled a love of travelling in Col and an appreciation for “the intimacy of the road”.

Les from La Perouse was Col’s first mate at school. Les had only one stipulation about their friendship: “You have to barrack for Souths”. So Col did and they remain good mates to this day. 

The night before the famous 1965 grand final between the Dragons and Rabbitohs – the one that saw a record crowd of 78,056 cram into the SCG – Col and Les left school, walked across Moore Park in their uniforms, and slept behind the Brewongle Stand. In the morning the boys emerged undetected and watched the game. So the crowd figure should be 78,058!

Experiences like this, Whelan said, meant he was “bitten by the red and green monster, and there was no antidote.”

In 1969 Col became the first (and still only) Prefect to be expelled from Sydney Boys High because of his refusal to stop protesting against the war in Vietnam.

Col had begun drinking in pubs after school and became a regular at Jim Buckley’s Newcastle Hotel on George St, The Rocks. At this establishment he met several brilliant authors who would shape his life.

At the Newcastle Col met Donald Horne who’d written The Lucky Country in 1964, Germaine Greer whose breakout book The Female Eunuch came out in 1972, and Frank Hardy (below) whose Power Without Glory is one of the most infamous books in Australian history.

Frank Hardy left his Marx on the sands of the northern beaches ...

Col was taken under Frank’s wing and learned the etiquette of pubs; about drinking and of shouting. He learned about telling yarns. He learned the difference between telling stories and sharing them. He learned to listen. 

Col went to work at the Commodore Tavern in North Sydney which he described as “a working-class pub that was very rough”.

One day George the publican asked Col to check what was blocking the toilet. Col discovered a Beretta pistol was hidden in the pull-chain cistern. George told Col to leave it there. A few days later it was gone, no-one the wiser about its owner.

The highlight of Col’s working week was when the beer truck arrived each Thursday with Paul Sait and Ron Coote delivering the amber fluid.

“I’d see two of my heroes and they were just normal blokes, real down-to-earth guys,” Whelan said. “I was working once a week with my idols, the guys I’d watch play on the weekend.”

Col went to Macquarie University from 1970-72 and played rugby union. When he left he hitchhiked (of course) from Burma (now Thailand) to Copenhagen in Sweden, a trip which took him across Afghanistan and other places now off limits.

He hitchhiked to North Africa and the Middle East. He followed the Grateful Dead’s tour of Europe and developed a love of opium and hashish. He spent five months working on an opium farm in Turkey and six months on a hashish plantation in Lebanon’s Beka’a Valley.

He was briefly held by the Syrian secret police for photographing where he shouldn’t have been. He headed to Jordan and Israel. He worked with Bedouins. He lived on a kibbutz in the Negev desert.

In 1976 Col returned home to Sydney with an Israeli woman, Naomi, who became his wife and the mother of their twins, a boy Jesse and daughter Natalie who were born in 1988 through IVF. 

And he wondered what to do.

“I came home and thought what do I want to do?” Whelan said. “I had an interest in football and photography so I started teaching myself how to take photos.

“I started snapping pics at rugby games but at first I was terrible. So I would just give my photos away to players. There was no money in it.”

One day a phone call came from Gary Pearse that would change Col’s life. Pearse, a former Wallabies backrower, worked in marketing for Winfield, needed a photographer for the company’s new Winfield Cup sponsorship. After seeing Col’s action shots, a job offer came from John Quayle at the NSWRL followed by an opportunity at Big League Magazine thanks to “Break Even” Bill Mordey.

And a super sports snapper was born.

Stay tuned for Part 2 in which we talk to Col about his adventures as an NRL photographer, and Part 3 in which we talk about his cracking book about bush pubs. You can follow Col Whelan on Facebook at Nothing But The Pub or email him to say hello at idrink@nothingbutthepub.com.

Or have a listen to the chat with the man here:

Special thanks to Matt Cleary from League Whistle