CHELSEA FOOTBALL CLUB - HOME OF THE SEAGULLS

PLAYERS - BUTLER, John

John Allbrook BUTLER

STATISTICS

Guernsey Number: 18
Career:
NFC Games:
NFC Goals:
Debut: v Sturt-South (Unley) 30th May 1942
Finale: v Port-Torrens (Norwood) 22nd May 1943

BIO

Wartime competition 1942 - 1944
Norwood-North games: 13
Norwood-North goals: 25

Affectionately known as 'The Flea' because of his jockey size, Jack Butler played as a rover-forward for Norwood North in the World War II competition but gained greater acclaim as a long-serving captain and wicketkeeper of the Glenelg Cricket Club.

Jack was captain of the Norwood Colts in 1936 and won the O'Halloran Medal awarded to the fairest and best player in the competition.

Jack began his senior football career in 1942 with three goals against Sturt-South and was named second best player behind centre-half-forward Albert Sawley, who kicked four goals.  Norwood-North was overrun in the last quarter, going down 15.19 to 11.16.  Jack kicked 24 goals in 12 games that season.  One year later, at the start of the 1943 season, he added a farewell goal as Port-Torrens scored a 16.19 to 12.12 win.  Norwood-North turned the tables with a 12.10 to 8.13 victory in the grand final.  By then Jack was dabbling in baseball and honing his cricket skills.

Jack was born at Kensington Park on 13 September 1916 to onetime Norseman miner Ammon Butler and his wife Ethel (née Treacey).  Jack began his cricket as a schoolboy with the East Torrens B grade team.  Two years later he was promoted to the A team and elected captain in 1939.  During the war years he captained the East Torrens-Glenelg combined team and transferred to Glenelg when the war ended.

He captained Glenelg from 1945-46 to 1956-57 and steered his side to premierships in 1947-48, 1951-52 and 1953-54.  Originally an opening batsman, he became a very good wicketkeeper and dropped himself down the batting order, hitting a top score of 122 not out along the way.  
He captained a State Second XI, served as  a South Australian selector and coached Glenelg after he retired as a player.

Jack was sales manager of Eyles Co-operative Ltd, which supplied independent grocers, before retiring to Queensland with his wife Marjorie (Sutton) and daughter Judith.  Jack 'Flea' Butler died in 2005 at the age of 89

P Robins May 2019

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