Ernest 'Guff' Rawson was a triple premiership player rated by Norwood legend 'Topsy' Waldron as among the giants of his place and time.
A grand mark and kick, 'Guff' was equally at home as a centreman or a forward. He played alongside Waldron, 'Bunny' Daly, Jack Woods and 'Shorty' McKee when Norwood defeated South Melbourne three times at Kensington Oval in 1888 to claim the Championship of Australia. He was in the best players when Norwood defeated England, 5.8 to 3.1, at Adelaide Oval on 14 July 1888.
'Guff' was a very dependable player who could be relied on week after week. In 1889 injuries to key players thrust extra following duties on to him but he thrived on the pressure as Norwood moved smoothly to its third successive premiership, defeating Port Adelaide 7.4 to 5.9 in a tense deciding match. It was a fitting finale to a fine career.
Born in Adelaide on 31 March 1865 to Thomas Rawson and the former Hannah Bertall, immigrants from Nottingham, 'Guff' played his early football with Hotham, the famous junior combination of the period.
His younger brother Arthur, who played with Prospect, was the father of North Adelaide footballer Norval Rawson. An older brother, Tom, was the father of an earlier North Adelaide player, Harold Rawson.
In his youth, 'Guff' was a champion breaststroke swimmer at the old City Baths. He was well known as one of the first drivers of Adelaide's horse-drawn trams, known as dinghys.
'Guff' lived at Prospect before moving to Broken Hill, where he died on 3 October 1937. He was 72
P Robins Nov 2018