For the first time clubs were allowed to openly pay players. They had been doing so for years under the guise of "expenses", but from May 1911 onwards it became legal. After an earlier attempt at introducing payments had failed to achieve the necessary 75% margin a later vote saw an overwhelming majority of league delegates agreeing that players should be professionals. The VFL relented under pressure from the MCC and allowed any players who wished to play as amateurs to do so.
Only Melbourne and University voted against dismissing amateurism, with the Reds officially paying each player 5/ a week to cover his tram fare and no more unless he could show that he lost money through employment to train or play. Some players who wished to remain purely amateur refused to even take tram fare. However, many players were compensated with jobs either with the MCC or with the companies of prominent supporters.
The Round 2 match against Geelong ended in a protest which was dismissed. The claim was that Geelong shouldn't have received a point which came when the ball was punched through after the bell.
|Combined Sydney B||WIN|
|George St John||1||0|
AFL Tables 1911 page