Wally Stevens was virtually a veteran of country football before finally being lured to the WANFL as a twenty two year old.An outstanding junior at Narrogin, Stevens had debuted with Towns seniors at fifteen, and had Great Southern Carnival and club fairest and best awards under his belt by the time he eventually ran out onto Subiaco Oval on the twentieth of April, 1957.It was to be the first of eighty four consecutive games with the Maroons in a league career of a hundred and seven, but it could easily have been with either Perth or Swan Districts. The Demons had convinced Wally to play a pre season match with them in 1955, but he later decided to stay at home, and before the 1956 season he had a run at Swan Districts.A pacy rover or wingman with superb disposal, Stevens impressed in his initial year at Subiaco, and was named in a State squad to train over the summer of 1957/58. In 1959, Subiaco made the grand final but went down to the irrepressible East Perth combination by twenty three points, after storming through the final series with an annihilation of Perth and a comfortable margin over East Fremantle. Selected in the side on a half forward flank, he was moved onto the ball after Don Glass, who was roving that day, pulled a muscle with his first kick of the day.Subiaco were to play finals again in 1961, but went down to the eventual premiers, Swan Districts, in the preliminary final, but it wasn’t until twelve years later that the premiership drought for the Maroons would be broken, far too late for some outstanding players such as Kettlewell, the Dean brothers, Kevin Merifield, Tom Robbins, Ron Triplett, Dennis Barron, Phil Farrell, Ross Gosden, Stevens, and Reg Hampson. A pulled thigh muscle in a scratch match in 1963 followed by an AC shoulder joint injury resulted in fifteen weeks on the sidelines for Stevens, and was the catalyst for his retirement at the end of that season. He transferred his sporting prowess to the bowling green, and was a top grade bowler at Innaloo Bowling Club for many years, with fours, pairs, and triples championship trophies on the mantelpiece. He has won the veterans singles event for the last three years, and was runner up to Bill Brown in the club singles. Wife Magdalena is also a veteran sportswoman, playing tennis for forty years. Sons Terry and Mark played football for Woodlands in the Amateur competition. South Fremantle star John Todd was his toughest opponent, and he regarded Laurie Kettlewell as best he’d played with.Wally Stevens was part of a Subiaco side that was unfortunate enough to run into one of the great sides, East Perth, in 1959 and another one, Swan Districts, in 1961, in their only two finals campaigns, and he also played at a time that Western Australian football boasted a plethora of good rovers, but was a consistent and talented midfielder for the Maroons.
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