|Full name||Corrimal Rugby League Football Club|
|Coach||James Grehan (2017-Current)|
|Competition||Illawarra Rugby League|
The Corrimal Cougars are an Australian rugby league football team based in Corrimal, a country town of the Illawarra region. The club are a part of Country Rugby League and has competed in the Illawarra Rugby League premiership since 1912.
History, Colours and Emblem
The Corrimal Cougars were established in 1912 with the help from local miners. Traditionally the club has a working class history that has overcome many obstacles to provide an opportunity for local children and adults to enjoy Rugby League.
The Corrimal team is represented by a Cougar, and their emblem displays this creature in front of a red background in the shape of football. The name "Cougars" was chosen following a competition involving local school children. Robyn Fletcher of East Corrimal Public School was the winner. Underneath the name is the inscription "Est. 1912". Their colours are Green and Red.
The Cougars play out of Ziems Park, Corrimal.
Ziems park was officially opened as the home ground of the Corrimal Cougars Rugby League Club on Saturday 14 April 1934. With Corrimal defeating Thirroul 5-0 for the Grant Gup, the Grant Cup was donated by Corrimal Hotel publican John Grant for the occasion.
The Ziems family originally own the land and used it as an abattoir for their local butcher shop but in the early 1930 Arthur Ziems, spoke to members of his family about donating the land to the rugby league club. The family agreed on condition that the club fence of the land to be used for rugby league.
In 1970 the ground underwent major improvements including the banks around the main oval with the help of the South Bulli Mine’s community relation project to become regarded as one of the best grounds in the Illawarra district.
The Corrimal Cougars have won two First Grade Premierships (1948, 1974)
1948 - A Season to Remember
Winning the first grade premiership in 1948, really established the Cougars as a powerful and successful part of the Illawarra Rugby League. They had come close in past seasons, but this was the icing on the cake.
Many new players joined the ’Red and Green’ at the beginning of the season. These included Ron Street from Warren, Jack Clare from Balmain and Harry Jardine from Wests. Bill ‘Dookie’ Burns was named First grade coach.
After a slow start the season two more important signing were completed before the third round, these players were Centre/Winger Arthur Clifford from Newtown and goal Kicking fullback Frank Bonner from South Sydney. Bonner had played 24 first grade games for the Bunnies in three seasons and Clifford had scored 5 tries in 6 top grade matches with the Jets.
At the end of the season the Cougars had played 18 matches, won 11, drew 1 and lost 6 including winning the fourth place playoff (10-4 v Thirroul), Semi Final (11-4 v Wollongong), Final (17-2 v Port Kembla) and Grand Final (22-7 v Port Kembla) in an amazing run to the Premiership from fifth place.
The Corrimal Cougars Grand Final Team was 1. Frank Booner 2. Arthur Clifford 3. Bill Kimbrey 4. Len Hickey 5. Norm Jarvis 6. Bob Bignell 7. Jack Clare(capt.) 8. Charlie Lacey 9. Les Murphy 10. Dale Schnieder 11. Jack Purdie 12. Ron Street 13. Andy Gallagher.
1974 – A long time between drinks
A second First Grade Premiership came to Corrimal during the Seventies when the Cougars were once again one of the Illawarra’s top clubs. The 1974 First Grade Premiership capped of a great era for the Corrimal Club which also included 3 Reserve Grade Premierships (1971,1973,1975) and 3 Third Grade Premierships (1971,1974,1978).
Led by Former New Zealand Test Prop, Oscar Danielson as Captain Coach, the Cougars First Grade played 19 games Won 13, Lost 6. Including winning the Grand Final (22-8 v Wollongong) in front of an estimated 15000 strong crowd.
The Grand Final Team was 1. Kerry Burke 2. Grant Vickers 3. John Delaney 4. Ron Loomes 5. Les Dennis 6. John Bonham 7. John Mcdonald 8. Neil Gilmore 9. Wayne Purdie 10. Ken Tompson 11. Graham Ernst 12. Oscar Danielson(Capt) 13. Brian Milthorpe. With John Jansen and Russ Amatto coming of the bench.
Players that have played in the National and/or Sydney competitions:
- Ben Hornby - St. George Illawarra Dragons captain, NSW representative.
- Luke Patten - Illawarra Steelers, St. George Illawarra, Canterbury Bulldogs, and Salford City Reds fullback.
- Craig Young - St. George Dragons, NSW, and Australian representative.
- John Jansen - St. George (1976–83)
- Oscar Danielson - Newtown Jets - New Zealand Rugby League Representative.
- Tyson Frizell - Cronulla Sharks, St. George Illawarra Dragons back rower.
Corrimal Legends Team
In 2003 a Corrimal legends team was named.
Fullback- Jack O’Connell
Winger- Les Dennis
Centre- Glyn Kemp
Centre- Graeme Tondi
Winger- Charlie Hazelton
Five Eight- John Bonham
Halfback- Col Donohoe
Lock- Paul Broughton
Second Row- John Jansen
Second Row- Ken Thompson
Prop Forward- Oscar Danielson
Hooker- Jock Delaney
Prop Forward- Craig Young
- Illawarra Rugby League: First Grade Premiership: 2
- 1948, 1974
- Illawarra Rugby League: Second Grade Premierships: 5
- 1924, 1971, 1973, 1975, 1983
- Illawarra Rugby League: Third Grade Premierships: 6
- 1971, 1974, 1978, 2012, 2013, 2014
- Illawarra Rugby League: Fourth Grade Premierships: 1
- Illawarra Rugby League: Womens League Premierships: 1
- Illawarra Rugby League: Club Championships: 3
- 1971, 1980, 1982
Alf Ramsay, Len Heath, Reg Eshman, Alex Mulligan, John Hutchinson, Jack Cartwright, Sid Graham, Toby Wood, Fred Hillyard, Greg James, Norm Jarvis, Dennis Murada, Mark ‘Legs’ Andrews, Trevor Shoobert, Phill Hedger, Phil Jackson, Terry Westblade, Dave Adams.
'A long Time Between Drinks 1912-2012' by Barry Ross.