For some time I have been asked to write a short history of the league. I am going to do the best I can and hopefully this first effort will jog the memories of some of the other Golden Oldies so we will get a good sense of our whakapapa.
In the early eighties (yes thats right you young fellas, Madonna was topping the charts, mullet hair cuts were cool and tight soccer shorts were the fashion of the day!) there was a weekend event held at Matamata called Sports Camp. Valley Road Baptist was always very competitive at this event and had some very good soccer players who formed a team and played together for Mt Roskill club in the Auckland open grade competition.
In 1982 there was a Christian rugby competition with eight teams. There were 1 or 2 unsavory incidents during the season and it was decided that the rugby competition would not continue the following year. I am not sure how it all happened but several of the rugby teams and Valley Roads soccer team got together and formed a soccer league for the 1983 season.
There were teams from Queen St AOG (2 teams), Te Atatu Baptist, Valley Rd Baptist, St Giles (Te Atatu South), Hillsborough Baptist, Tamaki (?Baptist).
These were the good old days. I played for Te Atatu Baptist in those days (as my brother in law roped me in). We were asked to wear a blue shirt (or similar). We would meet at the church and drive to Rutherford College (most teams used school grounds). If Rutherford was busy we would drive to Gloria Ave (which was a horrible muddy field that the clubs would use as a last resort!!). I remember one day we drove (with the opposition team in tow) to Rutherford College where the grounds were closed so we drove to Gloria Ave. Started the game at 12:15pm and then noticed that a club team was arriving. Part way through our first half we were informed that we couldnt finish our game as the club game was due to kick off at 1:00pm. We finished our first 45 mins then we all (opposition still in tow!!) got into our cars and drove around Te Atatu until we found a free park – Jack Pringle Park. In those days Jack Pringle was used mainly for the horses to craze on so it was pretty bumpy. So we were due to start at midday. Actually started at quarter past 12. Moved at 1pm. Found a new ground at 1.30. Finished the game at 2.30.
In those days each team reffed 1 half each. I remember playing in a game where the 2nd half seemed to go forever. After a very long time we asked the ref how long to go (thinking we were in extra time) and he stated there was still 10 minutes to play. After the game he informed us he didn’t exactly know the rules and that he had diligently stopped the watch evey time the ball went out. We played 63 minutes for the 2nd half!
Over the years people realized that this league could be a lot better. A committee was formed and became a lot better organized. In 1992 Riversdale Road (a former orchard) was turned into soccer grounds and the committee headed by Paul Freeman grabbed the opportunity to secure these grounds for the NZCFA.
The woman’s league was added in 2005 and continues to grow each year.
I hope that this section will be an ongoing article. To my recollection these are some of the teams who have been involved over the years:
Queen St AOG
Te Atatu Baptist
West Auckland Youth (WAY)
Te Atatu Bible Chapel
Avondale Reformed (now Reformers)
Blockhouse Bay Baptist
Peninsula (a mixture of Te Atatu Baptist and Bible Chapel)
CCC (Christian City Church legends)
Horizon (Te Atatu) Tigers
New Image (W)
Kiwi Ladies (W)
Bella United (W)
Faith Factory (W)
Primal Fire (W)
Horizon Tigers (W)
Primal Pure (W)