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Vale Len Hall
By Mulgrave FC | Wednesday, December 16th 2020
All at Mulgrave Football Club are deeply saddened by the recent passing of former player and coach Len Hall.
A life member of the club, Len passed away on Friday December 4th at Corowa Hospital, aged 77 years.
A Mulgrave player from the late 1960s, Len’s major contribution to the club came as coach of both the reserves and seniors in the 1970s – a period of tremendous success.
Taking on the reserves coaching role in 1975, Len led the team to the Division 2 reserves premiership in both 1976 and 1977.
In 1978 Len was promoted to the senior coaching role, immediately guiding the team to the Division 2 Grand Final. Unfortunately Mulgrave would fall just short at the final hurdle, losing the Grand Final to North Ringwood by just nine points. It was a remarkable fourth senior Grand Final loss in four years for the seniors. The team would finally break the run of outs with the 1979 Division 2 premiership under coach Ray Ball, before immediately playing Division 1 finals in 1980.
Meanwhile, the Mulgrave reserves would also win the 1978 and 1979 premierships, giving them four flags in a row. The records clearly show that while Len achieved great results, both his reserves and senior teams continued to win after his departure as coach - the sign of a genuine, lasting impact.
“Len was a terrific coach,” said Frank ‘Rocky’ Clifford, who coached the seniors from 1975 to 1977 and stayed on at Mulgrave to play under Len in 1978.
“He was straight up-and-down. He kept it simple and was very honest.
“He was tremendous assistance to me when I was coaching the seniors and he had the reserves. He never missed training… he was there with me at 4:30pm before every session, just the two of us, as we planned what we had to do that night. It feels like only yesterday.
“His players genuinely loved him. He was very likeable and had a terrific rapport with them. I was a bit more intense in those days… I reckon some of the seniors would’ve preferred to play for him!
“We had a fair bit of success on the field in that period, but Mulgrave was also very, very good socially… probably a little too good! Len was right amongst that – everybody liked him and he always opened his house to have the boys around.”
Len went on to further prove his abilities as senior coach at Rowville Football Club. He led Rowville to the 1980 Division 3 premiership, losing just one game for the season on the way to defeating Mooroolbark in the Grand Final. Despite the resulting promotion to Division 2, the following season was just as impressive. Len’s Rowville team again finished on top of the ladder, and made it back-to-back flags with a thumping 71-point win over Doncaster in the 1981 Division 2 Grand Final.
It's Clifford's comments about Len's bond with his players that are most echoed.
“It was a honour to be a part of Len’s life,” said former player Steve Payne. “I had the privilege of playing four premierships with him.
“He was a man mountain and was very close to his players. Len touched many during his journey in life and it was a great shock to hear of his passing.
“Farewell Coach. May we meet again in the afterlife.”
Leonard Raymond Hall
1943 - 2020
Loving husband of Norma.
Eldest son of Ron and Phyllis Hall (both dec).
Much loved father and father in law of Kevin and Tricia, Rick and Belinda, Mark and Veronica, and Julie and Wayne.
Stepfather to Stephen and Marianne, Cameron, and Kate (dec).
Grandfather of Tara, Josh, Tyler, Jesse, Mitchell, Lucy, Claudia, Megan, Oliver, Savannah, Amber, and Heath (dec).
Great grandfather to Aiden, Drayke and Mason.
Will be dearly missed
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