Sporting Person: CURRAN, COLIN, Soccer
|Member of the Sporting Hall of Fame
Born in August 1947 at Waratah, Col 'Bunny' Curran was the son of Jack and Flora, and he was a soccer star in school and junior circles at West Wallsend and with New Lambton South Juniors. He was the grandson of Jimmy Curran another star in the pioneering days of the Minmi Rangers.
In 1961, at just 14 years of age, Curran played in the reserve grade for Maitland who were then in 1st Division of the local Northern NSW Division. In 1962 when his father was transferred to Sydney he joined Canterbury Soccer Club. His family moved back to the Hunter in 1963 when Curran joined up with Adamstown and it was with them he remained for most of his senior years. Although playing some senior games in 1963 and 64 he was not a regular first grader until 1965.
In August 1965 he was granted permission by Sir Busby to play for Manchester United in England. Being such a keen student of the game he paid his own way over and played with this club for a six month season.
It was evident when he rejoined Adamstown in 1966 that his stint with Manchester had been beneficial. Being a highly talented fullback he spent another four years with Adamstown until 1970, when the Australian selectors "earmarked the pocket dynamo to wear the green and gold", at just 23 years of age.
1971 saw the Sydney Marconi club pay him $3,000 to transfer to them, but it wasn't long before he was back to his home club of Adamstown. For most of the 1972 season he was out injured; then in 1973 was headhunted by yet another Sydney Club, this time Western Suburbs to the tune of $7,000. He spent two seasons with them and then in 1976 went back again to Adamstown. It was in this year that Adamstown won the major and minor grandfinals. His motto was "Never Say Die" and was true to the fact "being a great cover defender with a speedy recovery...showing a penchant to go forward when the occasion arises." It was no wonder Adamstown was glad to have him back.
In 1977 Curran transferred back to Western Suburbs, Sydney, for 1 more season, returning yet again to Newcastle in 1978, this time to join up with KB United where he stayed for 5 years, retiring from the game in 1983 at 36 years of age.
During his remarkable soccer career Curran played 35 times for Australia, including being chosen with Ray Baartz in the World Cup finals in Munich in 1974. Injury prevented Baartz from playing in the World Cup matches and this put Curran into the record books yet again, as being the only Newcastle born player ever to make a World Cup appearance. What an enormous feat considering the World Cup was then a 16 team final instead of 24, which it is now?
To quote from Jack Pollard who in 1974 wrote: "Over the years the North has given many fine defenders and Colin Curran - a proven member of the Socceroos - is one of the best." And according to the World Cup Handbook "Col 'Bunny' Curran is a lay down misere for the title of most popular Australian representative." It wasn't suprising then to learn that he was named one of the best players on the ground in the 1979 match between Australia and New Zealand.
Col Curran now lives at Eleebana with his wife and two sons who have both followed in their father's footsteps and taken up soccer as one of their sports. He still follows soccer and will always remain one of the true gentlemen of the game.
1970 - Australia V's Iran
1970 - Australia V's Israel
1970 - Australia V's Hapoel
1970 - Australia V's Greece A & B
1970 - Australia V's Mexico
1970 - Australia V's Manchester United
1971 - Australia V's English F.A
1973 - Australia V's Iran
1973 - Australia V's South Korea
1974 - Australia V's Ferencvaros (Hungarian Club)
1974 - Australia V's Auckland
1974 - Australia V's Uruguay
1974 - Australia V's Indonesia
1974 - Australia V's Xmax Neuchatel
1974 - Australia V's East Germany
1974 - Australia V's West Germany
1974 - Australia V's Chile
1975 - Australia V's Legia Warsaw (Polish Team)
1977 - Australia V's Kuwait
1977 - Australia V's South Korea
1977 - Australia V's Kong Hong
1977 - Australia V's Singapore
1977 - Australia V's Iran
1979 - Australia V's New Zealand
1970 - Australian Touring Team to New Caledonia
1974 - World Cup Squad