If you see No 31 running around in the ruck in the Reserves in  a Western Magpies guernsey on Saturday you may be interested to know that the player concerned had never heard of Australian Rules Football 2 years ago, let alone played the game.

Rob Mohr is a fast learner as he only took up footy last year when he came to Australia from his native Germany and had a spell at Apollo Bay in Victoria.
As is often the case when a young man arrives in a small country town , the first question asked is ” can you play footy?” and the locals also ponder that “ this bloke looks a likely type”. Rob may have looked a likely type but as to whether he could play footy only time would tell.  However, he has shown that he did pick up the skills of the game quickly, so that in his first season for the Magpies and only second season of footy  he has been improving in each match he has played to be an integral part of the successful Magpies Reserves team.

Rob moved to Brisbane at the start of the year to be with his Australian girlfriend and found himself living around the corner from Chelmer Oval and decided to have another crack at the Aussie style of footy and says he has found it challenging and enjoyable and says he is still picking up the nuances of the game.

He works in engineering and says his sporting activities as a youngster were mainly in gymnastics but he grew too big to be a top-liner in that sport.

The Western Magpies have welcomed the “Big German” into the fold and Rob says he loves the team camaraderie and club feel of the game and no doubt Rob will be an integral part of the Magpies Reserves  push for premiership honours this season.

The Western Magpies have had many players from a multicultural background. In recent seasons the Magpies  had an American in Bryan Dragus play for the club for a couple of seasons and “the Drage” was a popular member of the club and went on the represent the USA in the International Rules series on several occasions.

If you scan the names of many of the players and officials in the club over the years you will see that many have non-Anglo names, many of which are legends of the club—Jakavicius, Gersekowski, Rozynski, Lacis, Kluver, Mihalopoulos, Kassulke, Mateja, Dalgarno, Zillman, Schaffert  and present day players  Jaenke-Cain,  De Nys, Yusia-Maricic, Uebergang, Sondergeld,  Kwizera, Mazarolle, Spasovski, Yoshiura, Malouf  to name a few.

Our great Australian game has been a wonderful unifying force for good  and it truly lives up to the slogan, “Many Cultures, One Game”.

Players on Saturday will wear orange shoelaces as recognition of Multicultural round.


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