John Douglas LAWSON


Guernsey Number: 26, 15
Career: 1927 to 1928
NFC Games: 9
NFC Goals: 10
Debut: v West Torrens (Thebarton) 3rd September 1927
Finale: v Sturt (Unley) 21st July 1928


Recruited from Wallaroo, Doug Lawson was showing great promise as a follower with Norwood when a knee injury wrecked his career.  Doug made his Norwood debut in the last minor round match of 1927 and was among the best players in helping Norwood defeat West Torrens by four goals at Thebarton Oval.  He continued to thrive against West Torrens in the following season. On 19 May he kicked two goals and was named in the best players as Norwood beat West Torrens 11.14 to 5.12 at Adelaide Oval. 

In a best-on-ground performance a week later, he kicked three goals in the 11.16 to 8.16 defeat of South Adelaide at Norwood Oval.  On 30 June, when Norwood snatched a three-point victory over West Torrens with a goal in the last few seconds, Doug contributed two goals in the second half and again was named in the best players.  Norwood won that home game through its accuracy, 11.8 to 9.17.

Injury kept Doug out of the next match, when Norwood struck its best form of the season in defeating Port Adelaide by nine points. Disaster followed in the game against Sturt at Unley Oval on 21 July.  In the words of former West Torrens ace Ossie O’Grady, reporting for The Mail: “Lawson dislocated his left knee, and was absent from the arena in the second quarter.  He pluckily returned to the field with the knee heavily bandaged after half-time.  He was, however, of little use to the side.” That was his last game for Norwood.

Doug was awarded the medal for most brilliant and fairest player in the Yorke Peninsula association in 1926 and was runner-up in 1927.  Prominent as a cricketer and sprinter, he also was the bow member of the Wallaroo Rowing Club crew which won the Wallaroo-Mount Lyell Cup in 1927 and 1928.
Doug played the euphonium with the Glenelg Municipal Band and became  a drum major in the Adelaide Municipal Band.

Born at Wallaroo on 31 August 1905 to John Douglas Lawson and his wife, the former Ida Fanny Chatfield, Doug  had an older brother, George, and a younger, Maxwell.  Doug married Phyllis Adelaide Laintoll in 1928 and they had one son, Leonard.  Predeceased by Phyllis, Doug was 77 when he died on 8 July 1983, survived by his second wife, Beryl.  He is buried at Stirling North.

P. Robins, D. Cox Jan 2020 

* For the picture we thank Lynda Joyce and her mother Jillian Buckerfield, a niece of Douglas Lawson

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