JOHN Majurovski had heard the doubters.
The ones who were shocked Broadmeadow had given the three-time top-division leading scorer a chance at 34 and after a year of interdistrict football with the Newcastle Suns.
Majurovski had trained under his former Lambton Jaffas coach David Tanchevski at Charlestown in pre-season in an attempt to return to the Northern NSW NPL.
The chance, though, came at Magic, where Peter Haynes’ retirement had left Broadmeadow without a recognised target man to complement the speed of Kale Bradbery and James Virgili.
In the end, it proved a perfect combination for coach Ruben Zadkovich.
Majurovski scored just six times in the regular season but he worked well with Virgili and Bradbery, who had 14 each, and he bagged a double in their 4-1 FFA Cup round of 32 win over Canberra. But Saturday night was something else. He scored his first top-division grand final goal, with a header in the 25th minute, and played a part in an own goal off Josh Rose in the 38th.
It was part of a Dave Williams Medal man-of-the-match performance from Magic’s fan favourite.
“There were a few people, I know that,” Majurovski said of his doubters. “But hopefully my football did the talking. That’s the way I look at it. I just go out there and play football, I love it.”
He was grateful for the second chance at Broadmeadow, where he played junior and senior football before stints at several clubs.
“I could have been at Charlestown, I could have been a few places,” Majurovski said. “Twelve months ago, I didn’t think I’d be in the last 16 of the FFA Cup, at 35 years of age, and scoring for Magic in a grand final.
“It was my junior club and I always wanted to finish my career here, so it’s worked out well. I don’t know if I’m finished yet. The club’s twisted my arm to play again and I probably will.
“My heart was set on coming here and when the opportunity came and Ruben called me in, I didn’t look back.”
A spot, however, was not guaranteed.
“He came to me and said he wanted to play, and I said ‘show me’,” Zadkovich said. “And he came to training and he showed me, and look at how good he’s been.”
Majurovski said: “I think I have proved it, and we’ve done well this year. I’m not looking back now.”
By his own admission, Majurovski has not always kept himself in top shape, but he was proud of his commitment this season.
“My wife gave me a lot of motivation,” he said. “She just kept pushing me. She said ‘don’t give up. You’re only 35, you probably won’t play again in a couple of years, so keep working. And I kept fit all year.”
As has been the case all year, Majurovski earned the biggest cheers from the Magic faithful.
“Half the fans here are my relos, that’s why,” he laughed. “Half the Magic committee are my relos, but it’s good to win for them. We’ve got the best facilities in Newcastle because of their hard work.”
The Dave Williams Medal win came in his third grand final victory, after success with Highfields Azzurri in 2002 and Jaffas in 2014.
In another great touch, Majurovski gave the medal to team manager Ged Holohan at the presentation.
“He has been massive for us this season and he’s an absolute legend and a volunteer,” he said.