Australian Football

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Key Facts

Full name
Charles Tyson Jnr

Known as
Charlie Tyson

Born
14 November 1897

Place of birth
Kalgoorlie, WA (6430)

Died
23 September 1985 (aged 87)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 22y 176d
Last game: 31y 213d

Height and weight
Height: 183 cm
Weight: 81 kg

Senior clubs
Collingwood; North Melbourne

Jumper numbers
Collingwood: 22, 24, 27, 25
North Melbourne: 33, 1

Recruited from
Kalgoorlie Railways (1920); Collingwood (1927)

State of origin
WA

Family links
Charlie Tyson Snr (Father)Cliff Tyson (Brother)Tony Tyson (Uncle)Sam Tyson (Uncle)Ted Tyson (Cousin)

Charlie Tyson

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV
CollingwoodV/AFL1920-1926106420.4062%1
North MelbourneV/AFL1927-192938381.0018%2
V/AFL1920-1929144800.5651%3
Total1920-1929144800.5651%3

AFL: 2,517th player to appear, 1,365th most games played, 1,320th most goals kickedCollingwood: 243rd player to appear, 170th most games played, 186th most goals kickedNorth Melbourne: 51st player to appear, 338th most games played, 160th most goals kicked

While following in his father’s footsteps by playing for Railways in the Goldfields Football League Charlie Tyson Jnr was pursued by a number of league clubs in both Perth and Melbourne. He eventually decided to head east and join Collingwood, for whom he made his VFL debut in 1920. Playing mainly as a half back flanker, he quickly established a reputation for assurance, reliability and poise. Widely respected at Victoria Park, he was appointed club captain in 1924 and was at the forefront of the club’s re-emergence as a league force which saw it contest the 1925 and 1926 Grand Finals.

Unfortunately for Tyson, the Magpies not only lost both, but after the 1926 capitulation to Melbourne Tyson himself became the focus of controversial allegations that he had ‘played dead’. When the allegations, which Tyson continued to deny until his death 59 years later, refused to go away, he sought, and was granted, a clearance to North Melbourne where, as captain-coach, he played out the remaining three seasons of his league career.

Tyson’s reputation was inevitably tainted by the scandal surrounding the 1926 Grand Final, and it seems unlikely that the truth will ever categorically be known. However, it does appear that there were some members of the Collingwood committee at the time who regarded Tyson’s relaxed and easy-going demeanour as ‘inappropriate’ in a captain of the ruthless, win-at-all-coasts Magpies, and were prepared to do almost anything to get rid of him. Moreover, the fact that, after leaving Victoria Park, Tyson remained on close personal terms with many of his erstwhile teammates, most notably Gordon Coventry, is somewhat hard to reconcile with the image of someone who allegedly let them, and indeed the whole of the Collingwood Football Club, down so appallingly.

Author - John Devaney

Sources

Full Points Footy's WA Football Companion

Footnotes

* Behinds calculated from the 1965 season on.
+ Score at the end of extra time.