The Southern Football Netball League extends its deepest sympathies to the Birkett family on the passing of Ian Birkett.
Affectionately known as Rabbit during his decorated playing career, Birkett was one of the genuine superstars of the old Eastern Suburbs Churches Football Association - one of the precursor competitions to the now-SFNL.
A blisteringly quick onballer that was equally dangerous up forward, Birkett played over 400 games with Burwood United and Mt Waverley-Burwood, winning four ESCFA A-Grade B&Fs between 1985 and 1990.
He also played in two flags with Burwood United (1983 and 1985) and topping the league goalkicking in 1985 (84 goals) and 1987 (70 goals).
Such were Birkett's playing achievements that he was recognised as one of the inaugural inductees into the Southern Football Netball League Hall of Fame in 2015.