– Kevin Taylor passes

We don’t often write about the death of people mainly because the nature of this organisation sees the demise of many of our former players and officials.  However we make one exception: Kevin Taylor.  A name known in Sydney football between the 1970s-90s to many, mostly as K.T.  Kevin died last Tuesday as a result of lung cancer, he was 83.

He played a big part in changes to the game after he moved to Sydney from Melbourne in 1976 to manage a large Sydney Cinema which was part of the Village Road Show chain.  He was always interested in football and the media and started all this in his early days as the assistant secretary of the Diamond Valley Football league.

Followers of the game today might remember Kevin through his website: Footystats and in the 1990s edited the Sydney Football Record and there was no more well researched and well written publication than this.  He did a wonderful job on the Record, starting in 1979 when he, as part of a coup that took over the management of Sydney football, produced a wonderful series of documents that year.  You can read the copies here.

He was very much pro the VFL coming to Sydney and was part of that coup that set up the eventually failed Sydney Football League 1980-1986.  And in fact wrote a book on the Sydney Swans, a publication that is probably on the book shelves of many of the people reading this article.

In 1978 Kevin hosted the VFL Match of the Day on Channel 7 each Saturday during the season.  He chaired a rather large table of mostly Sydney football identities in a half time session which discussed local footy and also featured a clip of a first grade match.  During that year he interviewed Brownlow Medalist and South Melbourne player, Graham Teasedale and you can view his Erskineville Oval interview here.

In his involvement in Sydney football he was also a member of the NSWAFL Board of Directors; he produced a series of publications in 1980 including one called Between Seasons.  We have only found three of these and you can read them here.  There are more similar documents at our Magpie Sports Offices and we will shortly scan and add these to our online collection.

Kevin was also an Australian Football journalist for the Sunday Telegraph and the Australian during the eighties and he reported live on Sydney Swans home games from the SCG for radio stations, 2GB, 2UE, 2KY and 2SM at the same time, ending each quarter x quarter report with “this is Kevin Taylor reporting exclusively for ….. ”

Kevin supplied statistics for various media outlets and was always on hand for Fox Footy to text through pertinent stats on a particular incident or event that might have just occurred in a game.  He did this right up to a year or so ago.

Kevin was the secretary of the NSW Australian Football History Committee, the name of this group before it incorporated in 2010, the same year he was made a life member of the AFL Sydney.  He was also a benefactor member of the Society which means he made a significant financial contribution to the organisation.  His loss is not only one for his family but also to football in general.  He was a good hand and a likeable bloke.

I will never forget the time in early 1990 when a weekly Saturday Morning radio show on Community Radio Station, 2SERFM particularly concerning Sydney football was started.  League officials went to the Broadway studios to introduce themselves and get a feel for the place;  Kevin was one of those.  Community radio in those days was not particularly well organised (has it changed?) and as the aging 2SERFM panel operator was fiddling with the nobs and dials to produce a better sound, Kevin boomed across the room “for God sake man, get it right!!”  He was such a perfectionist.


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