‘Artful dodger’ giving the young’uns the run around

Derek Jay is the patron and a life member of  Mosgiel AFC and at 76 is the oldest player in the football competition at the Masters Games.

Otherwise known as the "artful dodger", Jay plays fullback for the Mosgiel Misfits in the 45-plus age group. The youngest in the team is 45. Team-mate David Young said Jay had a magic touch, doing a little twist with his hips to make his defender think he was taking the ball one way when in actual fact he was taking it in the other direction. Hence his nickname.

"Dodge keeps younger guys on the bench. I struggle to stay on the field for half an hour but he’s there for at least 45 minutes. He’s an inspiration for the guys in the team and for our younger players," he said.

"Here’s a patron — who’s usually a figurehead — who still plays and has more hair than most of the team."

The "artful dodger" himself has no explanation for his nimbleness. In fact, he is very nonchalant.

"I don’t think about myself as being particularly different. I’ve had no direct injuries from the game. I don’t do any training. I just had a bit of a warm-up with the dads and the boys at the club. I just enjoy playing the game."

Jay has a long association with football. He first played for Mosgiel when he was 15 and has played for Otago in the under-18s, the under-20s and for Otago seniors.

He was also a founding member of the Dunedin City Football Club. 

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