The 2nd Annual Sports Law Conference and Bar Football "State of Origin" tournament took place in Melbourne last Saturday, 20 October 2012.
The touring party from NSW consisted of Houda Younan, David Patch, Rohan de Meyrick, Graham Turnbull SC, Anthony Lo Surdo SC, Vahan Bedrossian, Daniel Tynan, Gillian Mahony, Hon Justice Geoff Lindsay, David Stanton, Craig Bolger, Pouyan Mazandara, Greg Watkins, Simon Philips, Cameron Jackson, Faraz Maghami, Michael Fordham SC, Adrian Canceri and Alex Kuklik each of whom should be congratulated for theirï¿½ contribution to the success of the day.
With the generous support of the Victorian Bar Association the Sports Law Conference was held in the Neil McPhee Room in Owen Dixon Chambers. In excess of 50 barristers from the NSW, Victoria and Queensland bars were informed and entertained by Ian Prendergast, General Manager Player Relations of the AFL Players Association, Stephen Lee of the Queensland Bar, Chris Nikou from Middletons and Graham Turnbull SC.
The organisers are indebted to the Victorian Bar Association which made available its facilities and staff thus ensuring the success of the conference and, in particular, its Chair Melanie Sloss SC, who also attended all sessions of the conference and the tournament. Ms Sloss was presented with a NSW Bar FC commemorative cap.
The tournament was held at the Darebin International Sports Centre on an artificial surface. The stakes including, most importantly, bragging rights were high as NSW Bar FC defended the Suncorp NSW Bar v Vic Bar Perpetual Trophy and for the Suncorp NSW Bar â Vic Bar â Qld Bar Perpetual Trophy.ï¿½ As undefeated champions NSW Bar FC headed into the tournament strong favourites.
NSW Bar FC was able to hold off an enthusiastic home team to a narrow 2-1 win to retain the Suncorp NSW Bar v Vic Bar Perpetual Trophy. Each of the NSW Bar FC goals was slotted by Bedrossian following magnificent teamwork especially in the hard working midfield. Fordham SC took the gong for best and fairest.
The ever competitive Queenslanders were dressed to impress and this they did. First, they humbled the Victorians by a 4-0 drubbing. There then followed by far the best game in the three years of the "State of Origin" series as NSW Bar FC and Queensland battled it out for the pride of taking home the coveted trophy. First blood went to Bedrossian again after some impressive team play. The Queenslanders struck back. Both sides had opportunities which they failed to convert and in the end had to settle for a 1-1 draw. With the "State of Originâ series tied at one win and one draw apiece to each of NSW and Queensland the Perpetual Trophy was awarded to Queensland which had the superior goal difference at the end of the tournament. Bedrossian was the worthy recipient of the best and fairest in this game.
Though NSW Bar FC lost the silverware it remains undefeated a fact not too subtly made at the presentation ceremony.
Thanks also to the Hon Justice Geoff Lindsay who officiated at the presentation ceremony immediately following the tournament.
The Annual Sports Law Conference and Bar Football "State of Origin" moves to Sydney in 2013.
A full report (with appropriate glossy photographs) will appear in the next edition of Bar News.
23 October 2012