Peter Crimmins

Peter Crimmins (8 July 1948 – 28 September 1976) was a rover for the Hawthorn Football Club in the VFL, playing 176 games and kicking 231 goals from 1966 to 1975. He was an inspirational player and captain from 1974 who wore number 5. He was a member of the Hawks' 1971 premiership team.

At the completion of the 1974 VFL season Crimmins was diagnosed with testicular cancer. After surgery and two bouts of chemotherapy in 1975, he attempted to make a return, declaring that he was fit to play in the 1975 VFL Grand Final after playing 5 reserve games, including one final. Both the selection committee and Hawthorn's supporters were divided over whether he should play. Ultimately the match committee decided against playing him in the game, with coach John Kennedy admitting they were fearful a knock could affect him. As he explained later: "It was very hard, it was a unique situation ... Peter wanted to play. The committee was divided. He didn't play. We'll never know what might have happened if he had played." The Hawks lost the Grand Final to North Melbourne.

Crimmins died just days after the club's 1976 premiership win, which was also played against North Melbourne. He sent a telegram which Kennedy read out before the players took the field: "Good luck to you and all the boys. It will be a long, hard, 100 minutes but I am sure you will be there at the end. Regards, Peter Crimmins." Kennedy implored his players to "Do it for the little fella", and later stated that he believed his team was never going to lose. Crimmins' team mates carried the premiership cup to Crimmins' hospital bed on the night of the Grand Final win. The image of a stricken Crimmins holding the premiership cup and surrounded by team-mates is captured in Jamie Cooper's painting the Game That Made Australia, commissioned by the AFL in 2008 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the sport

Crimmins would die three days after the game. He was survived by his wife and two sons.

The Hawthorn FC Best & Fairest award is called the Peter Crimmins Medal in his honour. Crimmins' number 5 team jumper is displayed in his honour in Hawthorn's club room at Glenferrie Oval, the only jumper on display.

Other articles related to "peter crimmins":

Hawthorn Football Club - Records and Achievements - Achievements - Peter Crimmins Medal (Best & Fairest) Winners
... Hawthorn's Best Fairest Award is titled as the Peter Crimmins Medal, in honour of former Hawthorn Captain Peter Crimmins who played as a rover, during 1966–197 ...

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