Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
Stanley Rule

Known as
Stan Rule

17 January 1924

12 August 2007 (aged 83)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 22y 107d
Last game: 26y 228d

Height and weight
Height: 185 cm
Weight: 86 kg

Senior clubs

Jumper numbers
Melbourne: 31

Stan Rule

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV

AFL: 5,551st player to appear, 3,180th most games played, 4,447th most goals kickedMelbourne: 662nd player to appear, 232nd most games played, 376th most goals kicked

From Brighton Technical College Old Boys, Stan Rule was signed by Melbourne on the recommendation of former player Wally Lock, who had been impressed by the ability he displayed in a services match in New Guinea. Rule debuted for the Demons in 1946 when he was a near ever present in the senior line-up. Playing mainly at centre half back, with an occasional run in the ruck, he was a member of Melbourne’s losing grand final team against Essendon in 1946. After that, the 1947 season was a major disappointment as he missed all bar the last four games with injury. He returned to his best in 1948 though, a season that was capped with a premiership triumph against Essendon, after two gruelling matches. Melbourne was largely outplayed in the original grand final, but managed to hold on for a draw. In the replay the Demons won comfortably.

A Victorian interstate representative in 1949, Rule departed the VFL scene the following year having played 74 games and scored 13 goals. In 1951 he became captain-coach of Wodonga, where it was obvious that he had lost little if any of his ability. The following season saw newly installed Melbourne coach Norm Smith endeavouring to lure Rule back to the club, offering the not inconsiderable carrot of the captaincy. However, leaving Wodonga for the Demons would have entailed a significant drop in pay, and so he reluctantly declined.

Author - John Devaney


Full Points Publications


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