Les McKay | Australian Olympic Committee

Les's Story

1917 – 1981

The burley water polo player, Les McKay, was the Australian flagbearer at the opening ceremony at London 1948. McKay, a World War II veteran, had been a champion surf swimmer before the war. The Australian team, making its Olympic debut, promptly discovered that its part-time players, who played for recreation, were little match for the Europeans where in some countries water polo was almost a national sport. 

McKay carried the Australian flag at the opening ceremony for the 1950 Empire Games in Auckland where he was a member of the water polo team that won the gold medal.

London 1948 Water Polo: Herman Doerner (Captain), Arthur Burge, Roger Cornforth, Ben Dalley, Jack Ferguson, Leon Ferguson, Colin French, Eric Johnston, Jack King, Les McKay

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