MELBOURNE is saddened to hear of the passing of premiership player and former official Ralph Lane, who passed away after an illness with cancer on Thursday.

Lane made his debut with the Demons in round 10, 1951 and played his last game in Melbourne’s 1956 Premiership – regarded as one of the greatest teams in VFL/AFL history – playing a total of 72 games.

A quick winger with good aerial skills, Lane he won the 60 pound Eltham Gift running race in 1952.

He was promoted to the senior list after kicking six goals in a reserves match. Lane retired from VFL football at the end of 1956 to concentrate on his business interests and played for McKinnon in the Federal League from 1957 until 1959.

Ralph served as VFL company secretary and VFL Park ground manager in 1978 and was appointed to the MFC board by the MCC for 1985 and he became a high ranking official of the VFL.

In 1989 he was named a life member of both the MFC and the VFL.

The club sends its heartfelt condolences to June and family in this very sad time.

A memorial service will be held for Lane on Wednesday, 4 June at 11am in the MCC Members Dining Room.