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Proudly Sydney

Huge Swans fan reaches ton

Irene Linsell last week celebrated her 100th birthday.

The only loved ones 100-year-old Swans supporter Irene Linsell has left is two sons and a daughter, but she feels part of a family full of thousands as she cheers on the red and white.

The Wagga Wagga local notched up a century last Thursday and was greeted with an “absolutely beautiful” phone call from Swans head of football Tom Harley.

She watches every game the Swans play and says it’s a great feeling knowing she is one of countless fans.

“I watch all the games on my own at my village home, but you really sense there are a whole heap of Swans supporters pushing the boys on with you,” Irene said.

“I absolutely love the Swans and always look forward to cheering them on with everyone else every week of the footy season.

“That big fella, the goal-kicker, Lance Franklin, he’s my favourite of the lot. He is great to watch.”

Irene first started following Sydney aged 66 when Wagga Wagga resident Matthew Lloyd left the country NSW town to play with the Swans.

Lloyd had played Australian rules football in Mangoplah, a town of more than 300 people about 36 kilometres south of Wagga Wagga.

He ran around for the Mangoplah Cookardinia United Eastlakes Goannas and Irene said she was “always a huge supporter of him”.

Lloyd played 22 games for the Swans and as Sydney prepares to face GWS on Saturday Irene’s passion is as hot as ever.