In just about any given year you can confidently expect a re-hash on the origins of the Cup, a nod to HMS Chatham, or some of the individual achievements or ancedotes from past finals.
But what is perhaps unique in the annals of Chatham Cup heritage was the quirky contribution from Auckland's Arthur James which was published in the 1961 Cup Final programme between Northern (Otago) and North Shore United (Auckland), which was won 2-0 by North Shore.
Instead of looking back - James looked into his crystal ball and forward 20 years to predict the setting for the 1981 Chatham Cup final... and in the process even managed to presciently predict the formation of the Oceania Champions League (or South Pacific Cup as he called it).
His column is presented here:
CHATHAM CUP FINAL 1981
By Arthur James (an Auckland supporter)
As far as the eye could see, bank upon bank of spectators, 100,000 of them, were looking with eager anticipation at the green turf immediately in front awaiting the brilliant North Shore team and Northern of Otago, to take the field in the Chatham Cup final at Western Springs Stadium in Auckland.
Up to 1971 the Final had always been played at the Basin Reserve, Wellington. But with the rapid increase in population on Auckland, now 1,000,000, and the intense interest in soccer in this great city it can be said that today New Zealand Soccer has reached its zenith.
North Shore has already made sure of being the NZ representative to contest the South Pacific Cup. A win in that contest could earn it a world club game against Real Madrid, expected winner of the European Cup.
North Shore could then go on to the World Club Cup final, this year to be staged in South America.
But today is to most New Zealanders the greatest of all Finals, even surpassing the great English Cup Final.
Let us look at the teams. Young, J Polyanski, a relation of the brilliant J Polyanski, at centre-forward, Also two of Ken Armstrong's boys are in the North Shore team. Four of the players are in the national team and the goalkeeper is in world class.
Northern of Otago, although perhaps not possessing the glamour of North Shore, has a brilliant record of achievement, particularly in the Chatham Cup. A close result is expected. Northern with its great half-back line, could win for it the Chatham Cup.
However it's going to be hard put to check the tricky Auckland forwards. During the past 20 years soccer has snowballed throughout New Zealand. The solution was found in 1961 when the prevailing idea that immigrants would boost soccer to the skies had proved futile.
Instead the New Zealand Football Association got down to business, got out its maps, pin-pointed every school in the country and by 1963 had at least one soccer team in every school in New Zealand. Since then soccer has been supreme in New Zealand.
Maybe someone would like to try and pen a matcher for the 2015 Chatham Cup final programme, painting the scene for the 2035 final?
# In 1981 Dunedin City beat Mt Wellington 3-1 in the Chatham Cup final at the Basin Reserve, and then wound up as a club a decade later. North Shore went on to record a record 12 appearances in a Chatham Cup final, the most recent in 1995. Northern managed one more final appearance, the following year in 1962 when beat 4-1 by Hamilton Technical Old Boys, to take their tally to eight finals. So far Western Springs has not managed to host a Chatham Cup final.
# The 1961 Chatham Cup final programme was A5 size, 24 pages, with just four of those pages being ads (including one ad announcing the complete 2-hour BBC television film of the 1960 European Cup final between Real Madrid and Eintracht would be shown in the YMCA Gymnasium, on August 26, 7.30pm, sponsored by the Optimists Club). Though it lacked photos, it was an excellent read.