Perth or Melbourne: Where Should The Nicky Winmar Statue Go?
It was a pivotal moment in not just AFL history, but Australian sporting history.
During match between St Kilda and Collingwood at Victoria Park in 1993, Nicky Winmar famously stood up to racial abuse by lifting his guernsey, pointing to his skin.
“It was an iconic moment,” Paul said.
“Up until that point, you could say horrible things at the football and it was just perfectly acceptable; people would just yell it over the fence.
“Now, it’s disgusting; it’s a disgrace and you get kicked out and rightly so.”
Lise agree that it was a turning point in AFL.
“He said 'I’m proud of my black skin, I’m proud of my Aboriginality, I’m proud of being an Indigenous man'," she said.
To mark the 25th anniversary of the moment, the AFL threw its support behind the $200K project which saw a bronze statue commissioned.
Photo: Wayne Ludbey
Thing is, as Lise said on Tuesday: “it’s still sitting in Melbourne somewhere.”
Not only that, Winmar has expressed his wish that it be displayed at Optus Stadium.
“The argument you continually hear is that he didn’t play for West Coast or Fremantle,” Paul said.
“So, it should be in Melbourne because he played the lion’s share of his football for St Kilda.”
Lise countered with the reason why Winmar wanted the statue to be in Perth.
“Nicky Winmar has already said that he wants it to go outside Perth Stadium because he’s a Noongar man and he wants it to be in Western Australia”
Winmar is originally from Pingelly, in the wheatbelt east of Perth.
Paul backed up the argument further by saying there wasn’t even a “working ground” that was relevant to this iconic moment.
“St Kilda don’t have a home ground, they play some games at Etihad, Vic Park, where the incident took place, is no longer around, they play some VFL fixtures there.”
“Optus Stadium is the perfect choice”