Anthony George Capes was as fine a player ever to have played in the VAFA. On leaving school, Tony was a medical student living at Newman College and playing with Xavs was not an option. At Uni Blacks, Capes was outstanding as a centre half-back or centre half-forward. Richmond were constantly on his doorstep, urging him to play league football. Tony represented the VAFA on many occasions and in 1956 was picked to play in the Olympic Games exhibition match at the MCG against a team of VFL and VFA players who played as amateurs.
In 1957, Tony graduated in medicine but did not get an appointment to St Vincent’s. He headed to Western Australia, where he played for Claremont and represented Western Australia. He dominated in the ANFC carnival, renewing the Tigers' interest. But when Tony returned to Melbourne in 1960, he chose to play with the Old Xavs, where he played three years of great footy, before the pressures of medicine and family finished him as a player.
Tony was a GP in Footscray, which led to his involvement with the Western Bulldogs as club medico and later club president.
John played 132 games with the Old Xaverians during the 1970s and 80s. He was a very reliable defender and a member of the 1981 A Section premiership team. While still playing, John took on quite a number of off-field roles. He captained the club and later served as treasurer, VAFA delegate and president.
Thomas Daniel Corcoran came to Xavs via Garfield FC, where he was playing coach. He played 82 games in red and black, was captain in 1982 and represented the VAFA against the VCFL and the VFA in 1984. Corcoran went on to coach the Old Xavs between 1987 -1990.
Matt Killer Bourke was a spectacular, mercurial, and skilful forward who played briefly with Hawthorn and Fitzroy before returning to wear the red and black on 121 occasions. He won many games off his own boot and took some spectacular marks, particularly at Elsternwick. Killer was a very confident player, who loved to turn it on in the big games before the big crowds. He was instrumental in the premierships of 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998 and 1999.
Club Owner Jack Bowen recalls Matt playing against Ormond in 1994: Midway through the game, on the end of a long lead that had taken him to centre wing, Matt launched himself above a pack and ended up standing on his tippy toes, right on top of Michael Blood’s head. Taking the ball at full stretch over his head, he landed on his feet, wheeled around and kicked a torpedo into the forward line. Everyone on the ground had stopped running, and with mouths wide open, were in awe of what they had just witnessed. After the game I approached Killer and said, “Matthew, not only is that the best mark I have ever seen in amateur football, it’s the best mark I have ever seen in any football”, to which Matt replied, “Thanks Jack, it’d probably be in my top five”.
Santa was a fine player in the U19s who played a lot of Reserves football before getting a regular shot in the Seniors. He soon reached his explosive best and became an extraordinarily valuable rebound defender, but he was cut down with a knee injury in his prime. Still, he managed 170 games with the Old Xavs and since retiring, has been an assistant coach of the Reserves.
Other Notable #2s
Adrian Schrader was a vital member of the football club, playing mainly as a forward, and won the Best and Fairest in 1946. He worked tirelessly to recruit new players at a time when the re-forming of sporting teams after WWII was a very important part of community life. Adrian retained a strong interest in the OXFC all his life and the last Grand Final he watched was in 2007. He passed away in 2008.
Frank was a strong winger or half-back flanker, played in the mid-50s. A quiet man off the field, Frank served as a judge on the County Court of Victoria.
Mick Atkins played just 33 times for the Old Xavs but won the Best and Fairest in 1987 and 1988. He was drafted by the Western Bulldogs in early 1989, finishing his successful stint with the Claret and Stout.
Damian Orlando was the quiet, thoughtful type who let his football do the talking. He played 52 games for the Old Xaverians in a career that was interrupted several times with injury. He had skills and speed to burn. His greatest moment came early in the second term in the 2003 Grand Final against St Bernard's. Xavs had failed to capitalise on the strong breeze in the first term, and the Snow Dogs threatened to go forward for the first time when Orlando picked off an errant handpass, took a bounce and rammed it through for a goal into the gale. It was the moment the game turned.
Tim came to the Old Xavs in 2017 after two stints at AFL level. Recruited from XC by GWS, he spent several seasons there and then crossed to Collingwood in 2016. A tall player who can play in defence or attack, uses the ball well and can bring teammates into the game.