91-year-old Greek-Australian football champion Lou Richards was honored with the John Kennedy Lifetime Achievement Award.
Collingwood President Eddie McGuire stated of his achievement, "He invented football as entertainment...Millions of fans, for more than 50 years, loved and laughed about their football because of him".
The footballer was also glorified by AFL Commission Chairman Mike Fitzpatrick, who commented, "Lou Richards has had a profound and enduring influence on our code, both with a football in his hands and also, at the end of his playing career, with a microphone and a pen". Richards played 250 Magpie games, that encompassed leading the 1953 championship.
At the club's Olympic Park training camp, a bronze statue of Richards was also revealed during the honoring. The President added: "Has any man in football history done more for the game?...A champion on the field, Lou Richards became a superstar off it...No one person can claim to have done more for the game, or for Collingwood, than Lou Richards".
The John Kennedy Lifetime Achievement Award identifies athletes who have gifted the sport of football with stellar plays, across numerous team fields. Lou Richards was born in Collingwood, Victoria in Australia, and was the grandson of Greek immigrants. His grandfather's original surname is Pannamopoulos and was changed to Pannam, upon his Australian immigration.
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