Jim Taylor’s transfer from South Melbourne to Norwood in 1955 was headline news in both states as he was considered one of the VFL’s leading ruckmen, having played 81 games and represented Victoria. The South Melbourne vice-captain was only 23 when South finally cleared him after refusing two earlier applications.
A strong, pacy left footer,Taylor played just 13 games for Norwood mainly at centre half back. His form, or perhaps his reputation alone, was enough to gain selection in four interstate games including a best afield performance at centre half back against Victoria in Adelaide.
He played an outstanding game in the losing grand final against Port Adelaide when he was generally considered best player for Norwood.
His one year in South Australia gained him selection in the “ All Australian” Sporting Life Team of the Year (along with John Marriott) made up of leading players from Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia
He returned to South Melbourne in 1956 when he won the club’s best and fairest award and was fourth in the Brownlow Medal count that year. During his negotiations to return to South he claimed, perhaps as a bargaining point, that he had a chance of becoming captain coach of the Redlegs in 1956.
Taylor went on to record 153 games for South Melbourne and 13 appearances for Victoria until he retired in 1961.
W Heading Feb 2014