Australian Football

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Key Facts

Full name
Bert Johnson

Known as
Bert Johnson

Born
8 June 1939 (age 84)

Ethnicity
Indigenous Australian

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 25y 315d
Last game: 28y 338d

Height and weight
Height: 170 cm
Weight: 71 kg

Senior clubs
West Adelaide; North Melbourne

Jumper numbers
North Melbourne: 22

Bert Johnson

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV
West AdelaideSANFL1957-196487360.41
North MelbourneV/AFL1965-19683150.1629%12.032.581.425
Total1957-1968118410.35

AFL: 7,662nd player to appear, 5,471st most games played, 6,307th most goals kickedNorth Melbourne: 569th player to appear, 387th most games played, 478th most goals kicked

Bursting to the seams with energy, ingenuity and quixotic brilliance, West Adelaide's Bert Johnson could be one of the most exciting footballers of his generation. Similar in style to East Perth and Carlton great Syd Jackson, he did not always fire, but when he did he was irrepressible. Between 1957 and 1964 he played a total of 87 senior games for Westies, kicking 36 goals. He also represented South Australia once. Described by Jeff Pash as "a football tonic?"¹, Johnson was a wingman in West's 16.13 (109) to 11.7 (73) Grand Final defeat of Norwood in 1961. He also played many fine games as a centreman.

In 1965 Johnson became one of just a handful of South Australians of his era to try his luck in the VFL when he signed for North Melbourne. He proved an extremely popular acquisition - with the club's fans, at any rate. North's officials were less impressed, as his ebullient, sometimes confrontational personality saw him fall foul of club rules on several occasions. Nevertheless, he produced some spell-binding football at times, with many of his best performances seemingly reserved for the VFL night series, in which North was a dominant force at the time. During his four-year stint in the VFL Johnson played 31 senior games and kicked five goals; he also played in the 1967 reserves Grand Final, in which North beat Richmond. He rounded off his senior playing career with brief stints at VFA clubs Dandenong and Williamstown.

Author - John Devaney

Footnotes

1. The Pash Papers, page 134.

Sources

Full Points Footy's SA Football Companion

Footnotes

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