Definitions

Toronto Downtown Dingos

Toronto Downtown Dingos

The Toronto Downtown Dingos are an amateur Australian rules football club based in Toronto, Canada competing in the Ontario Australian Football League.

History

The Toronto Downtown Dingos were formed in February 1996. Mark Jones, an accomplished travelling Australian footballer, had the idea to form an eighth team in the then Canadian Australian Football Association.

Mark enlisted the Inaugural Dingos from rival clubs. Chris Cunning, Tino Riccio, Tim Moller and Paul Tinkler from the Broadview Hawks with Terrance Wallis. Chris Cateno and Arco Van den Huevel from the Mississauga Mustangs - now Mississauga Demons.

Numerous meetings followed and Terrance Wallis (CAFA founder) was elected the first coach of the Dingos. The club quickly adopted the Essendon colours of Red and Black, as it was agreed that dark colours showed strength and aggression which has been a trade mark of the Dingos. The nickname of the Dingos was decided by voting on numerous animals (Canadian and Australian) and so the popular catch phrase "Downtown Dingos" was born.

The club quickly sprang into action enlisting new players through intensive recruiting drives. A training facility was found, a long way from downtown Toronto at a school near Bloor/Islington.

1996 was an exciting season for CAFA with eight competitive teams fighting out the battle for four positions, the Downtown Dingos did not disgrace themselves in their first season, finishing 5th by percentage in a great year.

The club is extremely proud of its success both on and off the field. In 1997 the club worked hard to locate a training venue and sponsor in the downtown area. The club has trained at Yonge and St Clair since 1997 and has only missed the finals twice since the inaugural year.

In almost ten seasons the club has enjoyed numerous characters from Australia, Canada and many parts of the world as players and supporters. The contribution of all these people is at the true heart of the club as the club grows in strength and numbers each year.

Year 2000 was a very special season for the Toronto Downtown Dingos winning its First OAFL Premiership and forming the club song, a first for OAFL teams. 2002 saw the Dingos return to the Grand Final after beating the Eagles in the Qualifying Final. Another premiership was not to be with the Eagles proving too strong on the day.

The start of the 2003 season was dedicated to the memory of Mike Lazecki - an inaugural Dingo - killed in a tragic car accident. The arrival of some fresh Aussie talent and the continuing development of the Dingos Canadian players - among some of the best in the league - saw the Dingos storm undefeated through the 2003 season culminating in the Dingos Second OAFL Premiership.

The quest for back-to-back flags in 2004 began with the Dingos in patchy form. Without a full-time coach, the team was relying on talent alone. As a result they suffered some surprise losses due to a combination of discipline and organisational problems. Brolsy returned after a handful of rounds and from there on there was a continuous improvement in play. The end of the regular season saw the boys hitting peak form. A second victory over the Eagles in the finals saw the club claim their Third OAFL Premiership.

Season 2005 started with Paul Tinkler back coaching the Dingos after dual premiership coach, Peter "Brolsy" Gordon, returned to Australia. The Dingos have been blessed with a continual supply of good Canadian athletes and season 2005 was no different. A handful of new Canadians joined the team, along with Chris Cunning returning from retirement to bolster the reigning premiers. The Dingos almost went undefeated, losing only to the Rebels, finishing on top of the ladder. This despite 8 Canadians away for a month representing Canada at the International Cup in Australia. The Dingos knocked off the Eagles in the Semi Final to advance to their fourth Grand Final in a row. The Grand Final was a "slug-fest" with the Dingos holding off the Rebels by 8 points for their Fourth OAFL Premiership.

OAFL Premierships

  • 2000
  • 2003
  • 2004
  • 2005

External links

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