Gary Berman grew up in Glasgow, Scotland, where as a kid he played soccer and competed in Judo, first playing rugby in 1976 while a student at Belmont House School. At the age of 13 Gary headed off to attend a remote boarding school, Rannoch, in Perthshire. Rannoch gave Gary the opportunity to continue to play the game he now loved and ultimately led him to captaining his junior inter-house team. While at Rannoch Gary also represented the school in athletics and attained his Bronze, Silver and Gold Duke of Edinburgh awards. During his school holidays Gary played rugby at Colts level for West of Scotland FC and was coached by one of Scotland’s and indeed, one of the British & Irish Lions’ most famous prop forwards; Sandy Carmichael. Gary left Rannoch in 1982 to attend his local comprehensive school, Douglas Academy, where he ended up captaining his school Sevens team.
Finishing school in 1983, Gary undertook an apprenticeship with a local Travel Agency and worked there for nearly 4 years before heading to Israel to do a year of voluntary work. While in Israel Gary played rugby for Jerusalem University on the weekends whilst his brother, Paul undertook military service in the Israeli Defence Force. It was during this time that Gary met & fell in love with a Greek Australian girl and migrated to Australia in 1987. Gary has lived in Melbourne ever since apart from a short stint working in the UK and Germany in 2003.
On the rugby front Gary has had spells playing with a number of local Victorian rugby clubs including Eltham where he was part of a 1st grade premiership winning team which only lost one game all season. Moving to Brunswick in 2000, Gary started playing touch every Sunday morning at Edinburgh Gardens with many MURFC past players and joined MURFC in 2011.
Gary has played well over 100 games for our club in both 4th Grade and the Gents XV. Gary has been recognised for his contribution to Masters Rugby at MURFC by being awarded the “Spirit of the Gents” award. Gary is a perfect advertisement for Master Rugby and loves nothing better than tackling the biggest blokes on the field and having a laugh with his teammates and opposition both on and off the field. Gary has consistently been available to help other Masters teams who may have been short of players and it is not unusual to see him play 3 games in the one day.
On 9 March 2018 Gary played Hooker for the Wannabees Over 45s against the Old Blacks’ Over 45s in a match which took place at AAMI Park. In his words, “Not too shabby for an old geezer with 2 left feet.” Gary Berman is an outstanding team player and club man. Please join with me in congratulating Gary on his election to the Committee.
Melbourne University Rugby Football Club