-Jack Dyer's date of birth was wrongly recorded in an early reference as being November 13, 1913  but the correct date is November 15, 1913.

-For many years Jack was listed as having played 310 games for the Tigers.  Early records showed that in his first season he was twice 19th man and did not come onto the field. In those days a 19th man was only credited with a game if he actually ran onto the field and replaced another player. Under a revised AFL ruling, all such games are credited and Jack's total
increased to 312.

-He won the Richmond best and fairest in 1932 despite playing just 11 games before being injured. He won it again in 1937, 1938, 1939, 1940 and 1946 a total of six times from the ages of 18 to 32.

-Although he missed the 1932 flag due to injury, he played in the 1934 and 1943 flag sides.

-He kicked six goals in his final game in the closing round of 1949. He had been captain-coach since 1941 and continued as non-playing coach until the end of 1952.

- Retired as the game's longest serving player with 312 games in

- Won a record six best and fairest awards at Richmond

- The Richmond Football Club Best and Fairest award is named "The
Jack Dyer Medal" in his honour

- Was an inaugural legend in the AFL Hall of Fame

- The inaugural `Immortal' in Richmond's Hall of Fame

- A member of the AFL Team of the Century

- Captain of Richmond's Team of the Century

- Premiership player in 1934

- Premiership Captain-coach in 1943


Jack Dyer's rambunctious character can be crystallised in one succinct

It was quite a few years ago and concerns alcohol, a car and a cliff.

Former Collingwood star Ron Todd had taken over the Pacific Hotel at the
Victorian seaside resort town of Lorne.

Dyer's colleague and friend Bob Davis remembers it easily, not

"(It was) high on the hills at Lorne, and it was six o'clock closing,"
Davis said.

"Jack had a skinful this day and drove his car out the front gates of the
Lorne Hotel, went straight across the road, down the cliff, across the next
road, down the cliff again and landed on the beach.

"Of course, everybody ran down expecting to see Jack all mangled and
sitting there behind the wheel.

"And they said, 'What's up, Jack, are you drunk?'

"He said, 'Of course, I'm drunk. You don't think I'm Evil Knievel do you?'

"That's the sort of fellow that Jack Dyer was."


It was inevitable that Jack's cavalier style of play would attract a pseudonym. It was not long in coming. And it stuck. One Monday morning in 1935 Age cartoonist John Ludlow depicted him as Captain Blood, cutlass in mouth. It came just two days after three Fitzroy players had the misfortune to get in Dyer's way at the old Brunswick Street Oval and crashed to the turf, sick and sorry, but not stricken.

Doing the rounds of the local picture theatres at the time was a pirate film called Captain Blood, starring Australian-born actor Errol Flynn who spent the best part of 90 minutes putting extras to the sword. In looks, Flynn had the edge on Dyer, but there were no dutiful easybeats on Dyer's chosen stage.

When the real Captain Blood hung up his leather boots in 1949, aged 35,  many a rival slept more soundly. His wily play and effective use of the drop punt, which he was said to have invented, had served the Tigers' cause admirably. 


Famous Dyerisms.

"He keeps getting where the ball aint"

"I won't say anything in case I say something."

"Bartlett's older than he's ever been before." (1980).

"Johnston missed one from the 10 yard square - it was impossible to miss that." (1981).

"The only way to tackle Justin Madden. I don't know." (1981).

"Henshaw passes the ball to Kelly and Kelly gives a Henshaw to Glendinning." (1982).

"That's the beauty of being small - your hands are close to your feet." (1982).

"There weren't too many best mans on the ground." (1982).

"He's tuckled strongly by Tack." (1983).

"He sets himself for a high mark - actually, that was a low high mark." (1983).

"He's put the game beyond result." (1983).

"Bamblett made a great debut last week, and an even better one today." (1983).

"The ball goes to Marceesie ... Marcheson ... McKann, er ..." before co commentator Ian Major interjected: "Actually, Jack I don't think Marchesani was in that passage of play." (1981).

Dyer once observed a player was "carrying a bit of a knee" and noted that "They've got a couple of good players in Harvey".

And then there was "a rather difficult goal kicked very easily".

"Diamond Creek was a long way away once."

"Mark Lee's long arms reaching up like giant testicles."

"Flanagan's trying to use some pace that he hasn't got."

"They should have kicked 12 goals in that third quarter because they were right on top and hardly doing a thing right."

"The goal posts are moving so fast I can't keep up with the play."

And once, on the long-running Sunday television show World Of Sport, Dyer declared that Fitzroy had "copulated to the opposition".


From: Jack Dyer Foundation website

His full name was John Raymond Dyer.

He moved to Yarra Junction with his family when he was a baby.

He won a scholarship to Richmond's St Ignatius College and De La Salle

He played for the Richmond Hill Mob in the Metropolitan Junior League.

As a promising young player, he asked Richmond (with whom he was residentially tied) for a clearance to Collingwood to stir their interest. It worked.

He made his senior debut in 1931 as 19th man.

He was dubbed "Captain Blood" by football writer John Ludlow after the Errol Flynn swashbuckling movie of the time.

He was reported five times during his career, but was suspended only once -a four-week penalty.

He played in two Tiger premierships (1934 and 1943), but missed the 1932 flag because of a knee injury.

He won his first Richmond best and fairest in 1932. His sixth came 14 years later, in 1946.

He was a policeman.

He once thought he had killed a Melbourne opponent with a shirtfront.

He scored 6 goals in his last game and a goal with his last kick in VFL football


The nickname 'Captain Blood' says almost everything which needs to be said: Jack Dyer was the epitome of the tough, ruthless footballer who took no prisoners.  However, the tiny amount which it doesn't say is also worthy of telling: Jack Dyer was a highly accomplished footballer who would have been a creditable performer even without the embellishment of brutality.  Perhaps more to the point, had Dyer elected to sacrifice some of his team-orientated qualities in favour of the individualistic approach espoused by certain of his contemporaries there are some (Melbourne super-coach Norm Smith - no mean judge of player talent, one ventures to suppose - among them) who suggest he might have become the greatest and most highly decorated footballer of all time.

Decorations were for Christmas trees as far as Jack Dyer was concerned, however.  Football was - and is - a team game, and if the best way to help his team to victory was to intimidate and unsettle the opposition, then so be it.  Moreover, if the needs of the team were best served by inflicting actual bodily harm on members of the opposition, then that was fine, too.  Having been schooled by nuns and Christian brothers, Dyer was nothing if not pragmatic.  "Anything goes," he once observed, "as long as you can get away with it."  The fact that Jack Dyer was only suspended once during his 20 season, 312 game, innumerable collar bone-breaking VFL career suggests that he was eminently capable of 'getting away with it'.

He was also a pretty good footy player.