HALL OF FAME INDUCTEE
Francis William TREASURE
|Date of Birth||10th January 1925|
Player 1942-1943, 1946-1955, 1957
Games 263 (South Fremantle 254, Western Australia 9)
Goals 5 (South Fremantle 5 WA 0)
Honours: Sandover Medal Runner Up 1951
South Fremantle premierships 6 (1947, 1948, 1950, 1952, 1953, 1954)
South Fremantle Captain 1954, 1955
Fremantle FC Hall of Legends 1998
The exquisite ball handling skills of David Wirrpanda are said by old timers to be reminiscent of Frank Treasure, one of only 3 men (along with Steve Marsh and Bernie Naylor) to play in all six of the South Fremantle golden era premierships between 1947 and 1954. A specialist half back flanker, Treasure was ultra reliable, super cool under pressure and able to dispose of the ball to great advantage. He seldom missed a game in his 14 seasons and his 254 games remained the club record for more than 10 years.
Frank Treasure was born and bred in Fremantle and learnt the game at CBC, Fremantle. He joined South aged 17 from the Fremantle Ex Scholars competition in the first season of the wartime underage competition. After showing significant promise as a defender in his first season, Treasure joined the Army in February 1943 as a corporal in the 47th Infantry Battalion and missed nearly 3 seasons of senior football although he was a regular member of army teams. After rejoining South in 1946, Treasure was a fixture on the left-half-back flank for over 10 years and was one of the clubs most effective and reliable players. He was particularly strong at ground level, being an artist at reading the play and he gave his opponent no latitude. His reliability was extraordinary and he missed only 5 league games of the 221 played by the club between 1947 and 1957 with the exception of 1956 when he was living interstate. His best season was undoubtedly 1951 when he was runner up to Fred Buttsworth for the Sandover Medal and was ranked as Western Australia’s second best player in the first state game between WA and Victoria at Subiaco. In that match however, he played on the wing and although he played 9 state games in all, many felt he was unlucky not to play more. The mandatory selection of so many other brilliant South players in the state team may have told against Treasure in the search for equity in club representation.
Frank Treasure was club captain in 1954 (when he played his 200th game and South made it a hat trick of flags) and 1955 but then accepted a coaching position with Coolamon in country New South Wales. He returned to play every game for South in 1957 before retiring with a club record 254 games. This was eventually bettered by the equally durable Gary Scott in 1969.
In 1958 Treasure again accepted a country coaching role – this time with Meckering in the Avon Football Association. He gained immediate success with a premiership but returned to the port after 2 years in the country and renewed his association with South in various off field roles including league selector and property man. He also coached CBC to premiership success in the Amateur Association and had the pleasure of seeing his son Frank progress to league football at his old club.
Frank Treasure passed away in April 1998 aged 73 of mesothelioma but his playing exploits continue to be recalled. Austin Robertson senior in 1967 regarded Treasure as the finest post war half back flanker. “Anticipation, ground play and ability to create opportunities for the man in front of him make the South Fremantle champion my choice as the greatest post war half back flanker” he wrote in the Daily News. “Treasure was a classy player in a classy side”