Kalangadoo footballer and Millicent resident Ben Mules has been elevated to the Hall of Fame of SANFL zone club Glenelg.
The announcement was made at a gala ceremony at the Stamford Grand in Adelaide on Friday night which was attended by the recipient and members of his immediate family.
He joins fellow South Easterners John Seebohm (Mount Burr), Ty Allen (Millicent) and the late Doug Long (South Gambier) in the elite company.
Seebohm was among the well-wishers in attendance.
Mules said it was “humbling” to be in the Hall of Fame given the number of champion players who have played with Glenelg over the past 100 years.
Playing mostly in defence, Mules said he had been pleased to have had the opportunity to captain the SANFL Tigers for six seasons.
“When you are in the midst of 12 seasons of league football, you do not have time to stop and smell the roses,” Mules said.
“Now that I have retired from the SANFL I can look back on my career.
“I played with many players over those 12 years and I made many friends.
“There were also the friendships made with the Glenelg supporters.” Mules is held in high regard in the capital city and his retirement from league football at the end of the 2013 season was announced by the SANFL Tigers and accompanied by a warm tribute.
“After six years as skipper of our club from 2006 to 2011, Mules has always made a significant impact within the team along with his unwavering leadership abilities.
“An inspirational player to all his team mates both past and present, Mules has remained totally committed to the Bays playing mainly as a defender throughout his 212 games.
“On behalf of everyone associated with the Glenelg Football Club we congratulate ‘Mulesy’ on his outstanding contribution to the Tigers.” His early career had been spent with the Magpies in the Mid South East Football League.
As an 18-year-old and already a Mail Medallist, Mules had led his home club into the 2001 season decider at Mt Burr.
This match against Nangwarry ended in a tie and Kalangadoo won the replay at this venue a week later.
After his successful career in the SANFL, the Millicent High School graduate returned home to coach Kalangadoo for the 2014 season.
The Magpies had missed the finals for four consecutive seasons and finished 2013 in seventh position with three wins and 13 losses.
Playing alongside his younger brothers Chris and Jon, the rookie coach took Kalangadoo to the 2014 premiership in a fairy-tale outcome.
The three brothers were also team mates in the winning 2019 grand final team coached by Chris and have contributed to Kalangadoo’s unbeaten status this season.
Their father Phillip is a former Kalangadoo president and A Grade premiership player.