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australian rowers profiles and history

Dr Clive Disher

Melbourne University Boat Club
1914 – Interstate Men’s Eight Championship six seat - Fourth
1919 – Peace Regatta for the Interstate Men’s Eight Championship stroke – First
Prior to WWI he was a successful rower in Intervarsity rowing winning Intervarsity Eights in 1912, 1913 & 1914. He also competed in Inter Collegiate rowing for Ormond College in 1912-13-14.

Winning 1919 Henley Peace Regatta crew - Disher seated second from the left

The 1919 Peace Regatta, and the winning crew who won the King’s Cup, have a special place in Australian rowing history. The annual King’s Cup race is a fitting memory to those rowers who lost their lives in WWI.

The 1919 Peace Regatta was a remarkable event in many ways. It was the first world class rowing event conducted after so many years of war. The spirit exhibited by the crews was excellent and the standard of rowing high. It was a representative Australian crew drawn from senior oarsmen from all parts of Australia. It was the only time Henley Royal Regatta was conducted whilst suspending both the Grand Challenge Cup and the Diamond Sculls. Further WWI took a terrible toll. Those who survived carried physical and mental scars which were only occasionally apparent. Pictures of the rowers who took part in this competition showed that they were a mere shadow of what they were prior to the conflict. It was an event deserving of a special place in rowing history.

Clive Disher signed the petition to the King to use the King’s Cup trophy as the perpetual trophy for the Interstate Men’s Eight competition.

Clive Disher enlisted in August 1917 and was a medical officer. He achieved a reputation for efficiency and bravery and was recommended for a Military Cross. He also served in WWII. He was awarded a CBE and Order of St John for his work.

Disher late in his life with his winning oars

Andrew Guerin 2010

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