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History of World Professional Sculling

World Professional Sculling Championships

13 September 1952 Evans Paddon (AUS) defeats Jim Saul (AUS) on the Richmond River at Woodburn in 21m 50.4s

This rematch occurred some five months after the earlier race with Paddon reconsidering his threatened retirement within a week of the earlier race.

Jim Saul retired after this race, married and returned to farming. Four years later in 1957, he had a trawler built and commenced prawn trawling. In 1978 he was appointed to the Fish Marketing Authority of NSW and served several terms as Chairman of that Authority, retiring in 1990. In 1988, he was a key player in the errection of the new fish market in Sydney which used a dutch auction system for selling the fish.This speeded up the selling process thus enabling buyers to return to their businesses early. It is still operating today. He was awarded an Order of Australia for his services to the fishing industry.

1952 tossing the coin for lanes. Paddon left, Saul right

Tossing the coin for lanes one week before the race.

l-r: Norm Shulstad, Jim Skinner (Paddon's pacemaker), Evans Paddon, Jim Palmer, Jock Bankcroft (secretary of the committee), Charlie Edwards (Saul's pacemaker), Jim Saul, Jack Saul, Verne Thompson (committee)

13 June 1953—Evans Fischer (AUS) defeats Evans Paddon (AUS) on the Richmond River at Woodburn NSW in 20m 55s

Fischer was from the Clarence River NSW and defeated Paddon three times, each for a £300 wager. The second race was on 7 August 1954 on the Clarence River where Fischer won in 20m 57.2s. The last race was on 25th May 1957 again on the Clarence River where Fischer won in 20m 46.4s. Fischer retired as the undefeated champion of the world at the age of 26 in 1958 as nobody came forward to challenge him. He still holds the famous professional sculling trophy, the "R C Hagon Cup" in his trophy cabinet at his home. Paddon retired in 1957 after the third defeat.


Fischer after his win

Fischer's financial backing came from the people of Maclean and surrounding districts and they shared in the prize money he won.

The first race was won by Fischer by two lengths. He was coached by Jack Casey and Snowy Burns. Paddon again immediately announced his retirement after the race and said that "Fischer was just too good for me". However Paddon returned two more times to challenge Fischer for the Championship.

Fischer learned his skills when he and his brother rowed a flat bottomed boat containing their sisters from Chatsworth Island where his parents farm was located to the Wombah school which they attended. This not only developed his skills but also his endurance and strength.

He raced successfully in butchers boat and Gladstone skiffs before progressing to a racing boat. He came from a good rowing family with his father a prominent rowing club member and his grandmother, Mary Anne Carolyn Fischer, a sister of the great Henry Searle. Jack Casey, his father's cousin, was his coach "and a darned good one, too" Fischer claimed.

Fischer hoped to raced Merv Wood, but as Wood was an amateur and he was a professional, it did not occur.

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