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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 %
1613630.18

From: Sturt

Number: 18 1971-1975

Melbourne captured the prized signature of the five time premiership player from South Australia in March 1971, but though he commenced training immediately the Demons were forced to fight for his clearance from Sturt for the first half of the season.

In his six seasons at Sturt he missed just five games through injury but Tilbrook was forced to sit out the first 11 rounds of the year before he could make his VFL debut. Secretary Jim Cardwell made 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.

The Adelaide club finally relented, and on the day of Tilbrook's debut 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 played in a win on debut but was involved in just one more victory all year as his new side snatched defeat from the jaws of victory by dropping out of the top four after Round 17 after having been inside it since the first day of the season.

Tilbrook had failed to impress in Melbourne's rocky end to the year, and after his 1972 practice match form was disappointing he started the season in the Reserves before succumbing to a shoulder injury suffered in the practice matches which kept him out for a month. 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 the status of his large price tag, and after a failed attempt at playing Gridiron in the United States at the end of 1974 he played just two more matches before retiring.

He then joined Old Melburnians and played seniors through 1980, also serving as coach of the MFC scholarship squad in 1977 but by 1978 his relationship with the club had crumbled when 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.

YearGamesGoalsBrownlow
1971 10100
1972 9100
1973 21246
1974 11153
1975 200

Media
"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

Links
Australian Football profile (external link)
Wikipedia profile (external link)


Created by Supermercado6744841 points . Last Modification: Tuesday 21 October 2014 15:48:09 EST by Supermercado6744841 points . (Version 25)