Founded : 1931 after a meeting on the 9th of February at the Caversham School Gym
at which it was decided to form a football club as there was no other club in
the south of the city of Dunedin.
Colours : Red
Ground : Tonga Park
Honours : Southern League 1974, 86
South Island Champions 2008
Southern League Division 1 South 1974, 80, 95
Southern League Division 2 1969
Football South Champions 2000-02, 2004-10, 12, 14-15 (13 times)
Website : http://www.cavershamafc.co.nz/
Starting with 2 teams, the highest in Otago Division 3, Caversham won promotion to the 1st division in 1938 and with the exception of 1 season (1959) they stayed in that division until 1967. The Southern League started in 1968 and Caversham found themselves in Division 2 where they finished runners up, before winning promotion to Division 1 in 1969. In 1970 they finished 2nd in Division 1, but as champions, Christchurch Technical were part of the group behind Christchurch United they opted out of the National League playoffs allowing Caversham to compete.
Talks were held with other Dunedin clubs about the possibility of entering a combined team, similar to the Christchurch United set up. However these faltered as other clubs didn't want Caversham's Derek Daniels as coach, so Caversham broke off negotiations and competed in the playoffs themselves and gained promotion. The talks with other clubs were resumed and Maori Hill and King Edward Technical College Old Boys (now Dunedin Technical) joined with Caversham and entered the 1971 National League as Dunedin Suburbs.
Dunedin Suburbs finished a credible 6th, but both Maori Hill and Technical withdrew their support at the end of the season. Caversham continued on for 2 seasons finishing 8th in 1972 before relegated in 1973 with the unwanted record (that still stands today) of scoring only 6 goals in the entire season!
The club responded to the disastrous 1973 season by importing players from overseas, this had an immediate result with the team winning the Southern League undefeated scoring 83 goals in 14 games.
Back in the National League in 1975, Caversham finished in 4th place, higher than any other promoted had done, they only lost 4 games, however they only won 4 as well, while drawing 10. 1976 was the season Caversham should have won the National League but as the NZ Soccer Annual said they “...allowed the championship to slip away in a manner that puzzled even the keenest observer. Going from being unbeaten to only getting 4 points from their last 7 games.” They finished 3rd behind Champions WDU and Mt Wellington
In 1977 they were joined in the League by cross town rivals Dunedin City, but having 2 Dunedin based teams in the league wasn't good for either team and at the end of the season they occupied the bottom 2 places and both were relegated.
The next 10 seasons saw the club in the Southern League, winning it again in 1986, before being relegated to Division 2 South in 1990. The 1990's were a lean time for the Caversham club who spent the time in Division 1 & 2 South of the southern league, but by the end of the 90's they were in the South Island League and won promotion back to the National League for the 2003 season, which became the last season of a club based National League before NZ football moved to a franchise model.
With the Southern League having been dis-established, Caversham entered the Football South federation league in 2000 and have dominated that league since winning 13 titles in the last 15 seasons and were also crowned South Island Champions in 2008. They have also reached the semi-finals of the Chatham Cup 5 times (2006,07,10,11,12)
Notable Players and Managers
Derek Daniels – English import Daniels came to Caversham in 1967 when they were in Otago Division 1 and as player-coach guided them to National League by 1971. Named Player of the year in 1971. He later managed Dunedin City between 1981-83 when they won the Chatham Cup.
|Bill Fleming & Alf Stamp from 1976 DB Soccer Annual|
Alf Stamp – A 6”4' striker from Scottish club Partick Thistle, described as the man with the elastic leg, looking as elegant as a giraffe, but with uncanny ball control, attracted a lot of attention and was named personality of the year in 1975, scored 13 goals in 34 appearances over 2 seasons before moving on to Hamilton and then Eastern Suburbs, also made 8 appearances for New Zealand.
Bill & Steven Fleming – Bill, a no nonsense disciple of Derek Daniels, took the coaching reigns 10 games into Caversham's second spell in National League and made plain that players must train or don't expect to play! (a policy which led to the departure of 2 players), almost won the National League in 1976. His son Steven coached Caversham from 1999 until 2010 winning 10 league titles in 11 seasons.
New Zealand International cricketer McCullum was Caversham's top scorer in the 1999 season with 19 goals and he also made 8 appearances in the 2003 National League season before retiring from football to concentrate on his cricket career
Where are they now
Caversham have won the Football South Premier league for the 13th time in 15 seasons, currently unbeaten with 1 game left to play, they have scored 91 goals in 17 games this season, including a record equaling 15-0 win over Northern (the other being 15-0 over Mosgiel in the 1974 Chatham Cup)