By Chris Curulli
Avalon FCs John Stone will turn 70 years of age this season, but the oldest registered player in MWFA is showing no signs of slowing down.
His name may ring a bell as the Newport local is the father of ARIA Award-winning folk duo Angus and Julia Stone.
Alongside his own blossoming music endeavours, John started playing football at the age of 12 and has not looked back since.
Over the years he represented a raft of clubs at Premier League level including Gladesville, Hunters Hill, Drummoyne and Pittwater RSL FC.
After a few years off, John joined Pittwaters over 35s outfit as soon as he was eligible and “has only missed a season or two” since then.
“I dont get really injured,” he says. “I’ve had a couple of Achilles problems here and there but while I can I will continue to play as I enjoy it.”
“I took up golf about 15 years ago because I thought my career would be limited in soccer.
“But I’m still out there on a weekend playing so golf there’s a backup for now!”
John was mates with legendary Australian musician, writer and football broadcaster Damien Lovelock, who tragically passed away last year after a battle with cancer.
He fondly recalls how together they set up Newport Beach Soccer Club with a close group of mates.
“We played in over 35s with a close group of mates on Sunday mornings and that was that was the only Newport team in any competition,” John recalls.
“We would usually have at least 20 lads at training every Thursday night, and Damien was a big part of that.
“He organised the shirts from the ONeill surf shop and I basically managed the team for a while.”
Last year, Stone travelled with a few friends to Turin to compete in the European masters over 55s competition, returning home with a silver medal.
He plans on attending the tournament again in Japan next year.
John believes his incredible ability to play on runs through the wonderfully talented Stone family.
“I think I’ve just got good genes,” he jokes. “Longevity is definitely in the family as my mother is 97 and still kicking around the family home.
“Ive also always played music and I think thats a nice way to live your life and not get too stressed.”
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