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Roy Poy was born in Albury in 1947 and picked up Australian rules football in Albury High school, where he captained and starred for his school.

An image taken in 1959 shows a young Roy, captain of the Under 14’s, sporting a beaming smile and meeting North Albury captain coach Don Ross, a former VFL Footscray Premiership winner and Best and Fairest who was on a school visit.

Roy Poy went on to play 50 senior games for Albury, famed throughout the league as a rover who could get his hands on the football for his teammates.

His football career passed the pub test according to author and writer John Harms in a story in The Age in 2008: “At my local pub the boys told me of Roy Poy. A character of Albury, he wasn’t hard to find. Roy played under Murray Weiderman at Albury and was, by all reports, a fine rover.”

Roy was a classic country town character, who in addition to playing football was a clerk with Murray River Electricity, a publican, taxi owner, cricketer, golfer, bookmaker and served his country in the Vietnam War.

At his funeral in 2008, Roy’s friends reminisced about his qualities with Roy’s best man David Dynan commenting: “Roy was a loyal true friend, passionate and determined in everything he did.”

Roy’s grandfather Willie Ah Poy was born in 1875 in Canton and moved to Australia in his teens. He had a rocky start to his Australian experience when at the age of 21, he was captured by police crossing the Murray River into NSW.

He went to gaol and faced the magistrate at Corowa Court accused of avoiding the compulsory poll tax levied on Chinese community members.

The only image of Willie Ah Poy depicts a picture of successful integration – standing on the veranda in front of his Chiltern store with four of his children, all dressed in western clothing with Willie wearing a hat, pants with braces and smoking a pipe.

Roy’s father Lindsay served in World War II in Borneo and was a famous bookmaker in Albury, a tradition he passed down to his son Roy.

Roy married his wife Colleen in 1971 and had four children, who according to nephew Lindsay Poy have continued the tradition of ‘fine upstanding citizens in the Poy family’.

A number of Poy family members have kept the football tradition alive including Roy’s cousins Graham and Lindsay, who both had solid country football careers.

Graham Poy feels the family’s cultural history is a big driver in the Poy success on and off the field: ‘All the way back to our grandfather Willie, the Poys have been very tenacious, especially Roy and I think his Chinese heritage had a lot to do with that,’

‘I think that's the way we played the game and approached life.’