John Tilbrook

DOB: 10 June 1946

Debut: Round 12, 1971 against South Melbourne at Waverley
Last Game: Round 13, 1975 against North Melbourne at Waverley

Games: 53
Goals: 59
Career Statistics (external link)

WinsDrawsLossesWinning %

From: Sturt

Number: 18 1971-1975

Though he signed for Melbourne in March and commenced training with the Demons, officials were forced to fight for a clearance from Sturt for the five time SANFL premiership. In his six seasons at Sturt he missed just five games through injury.

Secretary Jim Cardwell was forced to make three trips to Adelaide to negotiate for his release, but Stuart were adamant that they would only let their 128 game champion go if the Demons paid a $15,000 transfer fee. On the day of his first game, against South Melbourne, Cardwell was forced to deny that he had paid $18,000 to Sturt and $5000 a year over four years to Tilbrook himself but several prominent Melbourne supporters including Billy Snedden and editor of The Age Graham Perkin were said to have chipped in.

He eventually debuted in Round 12, playing in a win, but was involved in just one more victory all year as his new side snatched defeat from the jaws of victory and dropped out of the top four despite having been a fixture inside it for most of the year.

After failing to impress in his rookie season Tilbrook's performances in the 1972 practice games were disappointing and he started the season in the reserves. After the first game he succumbed to a shoulder injury suffered in the first practice game. The injury kept him out for a month and he didn't play a senior game until Round 10.

Known as "Diamond Jim" due to the expense the Demons had gone to in order to sign him, Tilbrook never lived up to his status and large price tag and after a failed attempt at playing Gridiron in the United States at the end of 1974 he eventually retired at the end of the next season and played in the amateurs with Old Melburnians - where he remained playing seniors through 1980.

Tilbrook was appointed coach of the MFC scholarship squad in 1977.

In 1978 he issued a Supreme Court writ against The Herald newspaper claiming damages for libel over an article head "Demons, what went wrong?". Co-respondent in the writ was former MFC secretary Jim Cardwell who was quoted in the report.

1971 10100
1972 9100
1973 21246
1974 11153
1975 200

"Demons want him" (external link) - The Age 03/03/1971
"Tilbrook signs but.." (external link) - The Age 04/03/1971
"Demons in new bid for Tilbrook" (external link) - The Age 02/06/1971
"Demons step up Tilbrook bid" (external link) - The Age 15/06/1971
"Cardwell denies Tilbrook fee" (external link) The Age 19/06/1971
"Tilbrook to have shoulder X-rayed" (external link) - The Age 05/04/1972
"Former Demon sues" (external link) - The Age 09/08/1978
"New footy heroes are schoolboys" (external link) - The Age 16/11/1989

Created by Supermercado6564701 points . Last Modification: Saturday 11 October 2014 19:31:43 EST by supermercado6564701 points . (Version 24)

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