Club History

From Little Acorns Big Trees Grow

Where did it start? Who, you may ask is responsible?  Well!  The tales are varied and the stores are diverse.  However, it is generally believed that …

It happened in 1969 when a wise man from the (Middle) East named ILAN ORNER decided to form a hockey club.  In those early years of Asian migration, he probably realised that it would be a good idea to enlist the support of a community which came from a nation where hockey was a way of life.

It is reported that whilst gazing out of his window one sunny day, he was amazed at the deft stick work and ball control shown by a group of young men playing the game on an unkempt grass field.  He honestly believed that they applied glue to their sticks to enable them to control the ball the way they did!

And so emerged the HARLEQUIN HOCKEY CLUB, comprising mainly of Anglo-Indian young men from the south of India.  Under the Presidency of Rod Farmer, the club soon registered with the WA Hockey Association in 1970, starting in the B3 grade but won only one game in its inaugural year.

 It is said that in those early days ILAN ORNER was so committed to 'His' team that he paid all fees, collected and returned each player from their homes, and back again … that's Commitment.

What's In A Name?

A warrant has been issued for Ilan's "arrest", the main reason being to find out why he chose the name 'HARLEQUIN'.  After exhaustive discussions with contemporaries and other historians, Ilan's whereabouts where finally traced to the U.S.A.  In an exclusive interview, he spoke of the origin of the club and the name HARLEQUIN.  It appears he was so impressed with the versatility of these colourful personalities (and the sheer fun they were having) that it reminded him of that famous trickster, jester and character 'Harlequin' created by playwrights in the 16th century.  He accordingly name the club after the famous theatrical performer.

Under The Lights at Hamer Park

Our biggest handicap was, however, lack of our own home ground with clubrooms and change rooms.  Our training sessions were held at Hamer Park playgrounds in Mount Lawley, where the facilities were woefully inadequate.  There were, for example, no ground markings, no lights (other than the street lights!),  often several sets of detachable copper sprinkler pipes and, sometimes, a spray of bore water to boot!! The bus shelter opposite Mount Lawley Senior High server as our change room, social/club room and team selections noticeboard!  The first two years were characterised by a greater emphasis on fun and fellowship rather than serious competition and it wasn't until 1972 ...

 Read Full History Here


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