65 years ago today, was the 1st meeting at Christos Giannakoulias home in Alexandria, others present were: Elias Michalopoulos, Giorgos Lagoudakos, Emmanuel Karras, Dimitri Vlahos, Steve Papageorgiou.
At the time, there were several Greek football clubs in Sydney, such as: Astro, Atlas, Pan-Samiakos, Taxiarchis. But it was decided there and then, to pool all resources & efforts together and enter into the newly created –
NSW Federation of Soccer Clubs – a rival rebel federation, which had been set up earlier in the year, after a break away from the New South Wales Soccer Football Association, due to various disputes.
At this meeting they agreed to go with the name – Pan-Hellenic – to wear the blue and white vertical stripes and to be a representative club, for all all the Greeks in Sydney. Deliberately done, so as not to be seen to align itself with the name or colours, of any of the sports clubs in Greece, nor position itself with any particular side of politics, nor represent any specific Greek region.
The name Pan-Hellenic was also chosen as it would embrace all Greeks, whether they were migrants from Greece or Cyprus, Greeks that were born in Sydney, or Greeks who came from Egypt, Romania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, Northern Epirus, Constantinople, Asia Minor or Pontos.
But even from the very outset, anyone and everyone and from all walks of life, were all welcome and will always continue to be. It’s where strangers became lifelong friends, where husbands met wives and where wives met husbands.
It has been a rollercoaster 65 years, filled with huge triumphs as well as calamitous lows, optimism of what lay ahead and at times, thoughts of if this, was the end of the road.
It’s up to us to carry the torch and keep the flame burning. LONG LIVE SYDNEY OLYMPIC.