Australian and Magpie Rugby League Legend Keith 'Yappy' Holman passed away last night. He is survived by his wife Hazel. Keith was 84 years of age. A one club man (Western Suburbs Magpies 1948-61), 33 NSW games, 35 Tests/World Cup's for the Australian Kangaroos, Test & Grand Final Referee as well as being a 1st Grade Coach. May one of the Greatest Magpies of all Rest In Peace.
Born in Ballarat on September 11, 1927, Holman was raised in La Perouse as an orphan and attended De La Salle College in Surry Hills. He played football early in his childhood, but it wasn't until he moved to western NSW at the end of the war that playing football professionally became an option. “I was a cook in the Air Force and at the end of the war I was posted to Dubbo,” Holman said. “I played football with the local CYMS footy and was brought to Sydney by a fella that played for Western Suburbs at the time by the name of Eric Bennett,” he said
Holman was dubbed “Yappy” throughout his career after questioning a referee during a game. “A man named Darcy Lawler said: 'yappy shut your mouth'. I guess it stuck,” Holman said.