Local league legends on hand for Roosters book launch

Current and former Cobar Roosters players, committee members and fans were on hand to help local historian John Collins (second from left) launch his book, ‘The Crowing of the Roosters’, at the Cobar Bowling & Golf Club on Saturday. John is pictured with Tom Good, Harley Toomey, Chris Deighton and Jim Goonrey. Photo contributed

The Roosters were crowing again when John Collins launched his new book on Saturday night at the Cobar Bowling & Golf Club.

Packed with sporting history, poignant memories and hilarious moments, The Crowing of the Roosters: the History of Rugby League in Cobar has something for everyone.

Although the substantial photo-packed volume sold like hot-cakes on the night, there are still copies through the Great Cobar Heritage Centre.

The evening was enlivened by speeches from Cobar Rugby League president Chris Deighton, who spoke about the book, and former Rooster Jim Goonrey, who reminisced about his rugby league career, which spanned 326 games for Cobar.

Both Chris and Jim agreed how good it was to have the history of rugby league in print and praised John on the time and effort he put into the book.

John said although he never played rugby league himself, he had long recognised the passion the Cobar public have for the game and he considered it a privilege to have been given the opportunity to record the history, the players, and the ups and downs of the 96 years the game has been played locally.

He was grateful for the support he had received from the Cobar community, his wife, Barb, and especially from his work colleagues, who helped him complete and promote the book as well as setting up and decorating the room.

There was an appreciative crowd in attendance, supporting John by purchasing the book and enjoying swapping yarns.

Among the many supporters and past players were former Bourke Captain/Coach Tony Bock and his wife Debbie, who came from Narromine.

When they arrived, the first thing they saw was an old mate Tommy Good, resplendent in his football gear, the red, white and blue of the Cobar Roosters.

The room was decorated in the Rooster colours while the walls were covered with old newspaper articles and photos.

There was a display of memorabilia belonging to Tommy Knight, Nik Kosef, Peter Robinson and Doug Bellchambers.

It was a terrific night, acknowledging John’s achievement and honouring the great tradition of Cobar Rugby League.—contributed