1915 VFL Premiership season
Carlton fc 1915.jpg
Carlton Football Club, Premiers
Teams9
PremiersCarlton
(5th premiership)
Minor premiersCollingwood
(4th minor premiership)
Matches played76
Highest attendance39,343
Leading Goalkicker MedallistJimmy Freake (Fitzroy)
← 1914
1916 →

The 1915 VFL season was the 19th season of the Victorian Football League (VFL), the highest level senior Australian rules football competition in Victoria.

The season featured nine clubs, following the departure of University after a seven-year stint in the league. The season ran from 24 April until 18 September, and comprised a 16-game home-and-away season followed by a finals series featuring the top four clubs.

The premiership was won by the Carlton Football Club for the fifth time and second time consecutively, after it defeated Collingwood by 33 points in the 1915 VFL Grand Final.

Withdrawal of University

On 16 October 1914, three weeks after the end of the 1914 season, the University Football Club dropped out of the VFL and folded.

The reasons given for this decision were:

As such, both the club and the VFL had conceded it would be virtually impossible for University to become viable and/or competitive in an increasingly professional competition. Despite the outbreak of World War I eleven weeks earlier, the war was not given as a contributing factor in University's decision, especially as the conflict was not, at the time, expected to escalate to the extent it did.[1]

Following University's dissolution, players who wished to continue playing in the VFL were all cleared to Melbourne through an informal arrangement beneficial to both clubs:[3] University wished to see its best players playing together in the same VFL club to retain the strength of its own team for intervarsity competition,[1] and Melbourne, which had mostly struggled since its 1900 premiership due to the lack of a natural recruiting district (formal zoning was not introduced until the following year), gained exclusive access to a valuable source of recruits.[2] Among those who transferred from University to Melbourne were Jack Brake, Claude Bryan, Jack Doubleday, Dick Gibbs, Roy Park, and Percy Rodriguez.[3][4][5]

With the VFL being reduced to nine clubs, a bye was required in the fixture for the first time in the league's history.

The University club reformed in 1919, and continues to play amateur football in the Victorian Amateur Football Association to this day.

Premiership season

In 1915, the VFL competition consisted of nine teams of 18 on-the-field players each, with no "reserves", although any of the 18 players who had left the playing field for any reason could later resume their place on the field at any time during the match.

Each team played each other twice in a home-and-away season of 18 rounds (i.e., 16 matches and 2 byes).

Once the 18 round home-and-away season had finished, the 1915 VFL Premiers were determined by the specific format and conventions of the amended "Argus system".

Round 1

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date St Kilda 8.16 (64) South Melbourne 4.13 (37) Junction Oval 24 April 1915 Melbourne 12.10 (82) Richmond 11.7 (73) MCG 24 April 1915 Collingwood 7.10 (52) Essendon 3.8 (26) Victoria Park 24 April 1915 Carlton 5.11 (41) Fitzroy 6.5 (41) Princes Park 24 April 1915

Round 2

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Geelong 7.14 (56) St Kilda 6.18 (54) Corio Oval 1 May 1915 Fitzroy 14.17 (101) Melbourne 9.2 (56) Brunswick Street Oval 1 May 1915 Richmond 4.6 (30) Collingwood 12.11 (83) Punt Road Oval 1 May 1915 South Melbourne 6.11 (47) Carlton 8.12 (60) Lake Oval 1 May 1915

Round 3

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Richmond 9.15 (69) South Melbourne 8.19 (67) Punt Road Oval 8 May 1915 Essendon 4.10 (34) Fitzroy 16.6 (102) EMCG 8 May 1915 Melbourne 15.12 (102) Geelong 12.11 (83) MCG 8 May 1915 St Kilda 7.14 (56) Collingwood 10.16 (76) Junction Oval 8 May 1915

Round 4

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Geelong 4.10 (34) Richmond 10.11 (71) Corio Oval 15 May 1915 Fitzroy 5.19 (49) St Kilda 2.6 (18) Brunswick Street Oval 15 May 1915 Collingwood 9.13 (67) Melbourne 5.9 (39) Victoria Park 15 May 1915 Carlton 3.13 (31) Essendon 8.8 (56) Princes Park 15 May 1915

Round 5

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Essendon 7.10 (52) St Kilda 6.4 (40) EMCG 22 May 1915 Collingwood 8.14 (62) Geelong 3.12 (30) Victoria Park 22 May 1915 South Melbourne 8.8 (56) Fitzroy 6.4 (40) Lake Oval 22 May 1915 Melbourne 8.3 (51) Carlton 10.12 (72) MCG 22 May 1915

Round 6

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Essendon 8.7 (55) South Melbourne 8.16 (64) EMCG 29 May 1915 St Kilda 9.11 (65) Melbourne 13.11 (89) Junction Oval 29 May 1915 Richmond 7.12 (54) Fitzroy 8.12 (60) Punt Road Oval 29 May 1915 Geelong 5.10 (40) Carlton 9.13 (67) Corio Oval 29 May 1915

Round 7

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Essendon 12.6 (78) Geelong 12.8 (80) EMCG 5 June 1915 Carlton 11.9 (75) Collingwood 10.13 (73) Princes Park 5 June 1915 Richmond 7.6 (48) St Kilda 5.20 (50) Punt Road Oval 7 June 1915 South Melbourne 7.5 (47) Melbourne 10.8 (68) Lake Oval 7 June 1915

Round 8

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Carlton 15.17 (107) Richmond 8.5 (53) Princes Park 12 June 1915 South Melbourne 14.17 (101) Geelong 13.5 (83) Lake Oval 12 June 1915 Melbourne 10.12 (72) Essendon 6.17 (53) MCG 12 June 1915 Fitzroy 6.14 (50) Collingwood 11.8 (74) Brunswick Street Oval 12 June 1915

Round 9

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Essendon 5.6 (36) Richmond 5.8 (38) EMCG 19 June 1915 Collingwood 5.13 (43) South Melbourne 3.10 (28) Victoria Park 19 June 1915 Geelong 4.12 (36) Fitzroy 10.12 (72) Corio Oval 19 June 1915 St Kilda 1.1 (7) Carlton 5.15 (45) Junction Oval 19 June 1915

Round 10

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date South Melbourne 9.11 (65) St Kilda 7.5 (47) Lake Oval 26 June 1915 Richmond 8.12 (60) Melbourne 10.11 (71) Punt Road Oval 26 June 1915 Essendon 5.12 (42) Collingwood 11.12 (78) EMCG 26 June 1915 Fitzroy 7.8 (50) Carlton 5.8 (38) Brunswick Street Oval 26 June 1915

Round 11

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Collingwood 10.20 (80) Richmond 6.7 (43) Victoria Park 3 July 1915 Carlton 7.15 (57) South Melbourne 7.5 (47) Princes Park 3 July 1915 St Kilda 12.17 (89) Geelong 8.7 (55) Junction Oval 3 July 1915 Melbourne 12.13 (85) Fitzroy 10.13 (73) MCG 3 July 1915

Round 12

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Geelong 5.9 (39) Melbourne 11.13 (79) Corio Oval 10 July 1915 Collingwood 17.20 (122) St Kilda 3.6 (24) Victoria Park 10 July 1915 South Melbourne 10.12 (72) Richmond 7.11 (53) Lake Oval 10 July 1915 Fitzroy 6.12 (48) Essendon 5.5 (35) Brunswick Street Oval 10 July 1915

Round 13

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Richmond 12.15 (87) Geelong 12.7 (79) Punt Road Oval 17 July 1915 St Kilda 7.7 (49) Fitzroy 14.14 (98) Junction Oval 17 July 1915 Melbourne 8.6 (54) Collingwood 12.21 (93) MCG 17 July 1915 Essendon 5.15 (45) Carlton 12.15 (87) EMCG 17 July 1915

Round 14

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Fitzroy 8.6 (54) South Melbourne 7.6 (48) Brunswick Street Oval 24 July 1915 Carlton 11.8 (74) Melbourne 5.15 (45) Princes Park 24 July 1915 St Kilda 10.10 (70) Essendon 3.13 (31) Junction Oval 24 July 1915 Geelong 7.9 (51) Collingwood 13.13 (91) Corio Oval 24 July 1915

Round 15

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Melbourne 9.19 (73) St Kilda 7.6 (48) MCG 31 July 1915 Fitzroy 18.17 (125) Richmond 7.7 (49) Brunswick Street Oval 31 July 1915 Carlton 9.20 (74) Geelong 8.12 (60) Princes Park 31 July 1915 South Melbourne 13.19 (97) Essendon 6.4 (40) Lake Oval 31 July 1915

Round 16

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Melbourne 4.12 (36) South Melbourne 5.13 (43) MCG 7 August 1915 St Kilda 6.18 (54) Richmond 4.6 (30) Junction Oval 7 August 1915 Geelong 7.11 (53) Essendon 6.9 (45) Corio Oval 7 August 1915 Collingwood 9.8 (62) Carlton 9.9 (63) Victoria Park 7 August 1915

Round 17

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Geelong 7.10 (52) South Melbourne 10.14 (74) Corio Oval 14 August 1915 Essendon 10.15 (75) Melbourne 7.14 (56) EMCG 14 August 1915 Collingwood 8.13 (61) Fitzroy 8.11 (59) Victoria Park 14 August 1915 Richmond 7.7 (49) Carlton 17.15 (117) Punt Road Oval 14 August 1915

Round 18

Home team Home team score Away team Away team score Venue Date Fitzroy 18.13 (121) Geelong 4.7 (31) Brunswick Street Oval 21 August 1915 Carlton 14.16 (100) St Kilda 6.8 (44) Princes Park 21 August 1915 Richmond 14.15 (99) Essendon 6.11 (47) Punt Road Oval 21 August 1915 South Melbourne 4.9 (33) Collingwood 7.9 (51) Lake Oval 21 August 1915

Ladder

1915 VFL ladder
Pos Team Pld W L D PF PA PP Pts
1 Collingwood 16 14 2 0 1168 703 166.1 56 Finals
2 Carlton (P) 16 13 2 1 1108 770 143.9 54
3 Fitzroy 16 11 4 1 1143 765 149.4 46
4 Melbourne 16 9 7 0 1058 1066 99.2 36
5 South Melbourne 16 8 8 0 926 872 106.2 32
6 Richmond 16 5 11 0 906 1164 77.8 20
7 St Kilda 16 5 11 0 779 1026 75.9 20
8 Essendon 16 3 13 0 750 1067 70.3 12
9 Geelong 16 3 13 0 862 1267 68.0 12
Source: VFL ladder
Rules for classification: 1) points; 2) percentage; 3) number of points for.
(P) Premiers

Finals

All of the 1915 finals were played at the MCG so the home team in the semi-finals and Preliminary Final is purely the higher ranked team from the ladder but in the Grand Final the home team was the team that won the Preliminary Final.

Semi finals

Home team Score Away team Score Venue Date Carlton 11.12 (78) Melbourne 10.7 (67) MCG 28 August Fitzroy 9.16 (70) Collingwood 4.12 (36) MCG 4 September

Preliminary Final

Home team Score Away team Score Venue Date Carlton 6.18 (54) Fitzroy 5.8 (38) MCG 11 September

Grand final

Main article: 1915 VFL Grand Final

Carlton defeated Collingwood 11.12 (78) to 6.9 (45), in front of a crowd of 39,343 people. (For an explanation of scoring see Australian rules football).

Awards

Notable events

Footnotes

  1. ^ a b c "Exit University – Football League Retirement". The Argus. Melbourne. 17 October 1914. p. 20.
  2. ^ a b "The University Team". The Argus. Melbourne. 18 September 1914. p. 4.
  3. ^ a b University (1908-1914), Demonwiki.
  4. ^ Melbourne: University Stars Join, The (Melbourne) Herald, (Friday, 16 April 1915), p.3.
  5. ^ Migration of Players, The (Melbourne) Winner, (Wednesday, 21 April 1915), p.6.
  6. ^ "Australian rules game". The Sydney Morning Herald. Sydney, NSW. 17 April 1915. p. 20.
  7. ^ "Football reform". The Register. Adelaide, SA. 23 January 1915. p. 7.
  8. ^ "Australian Football Council". The Age. Melbourne. 30 December 1919. p. 7.
  9. ^ a b c Ross, John (1996). 100 Years of Australian Football. Ringwood, Australia: Viking Books. p. 382. ISBN 9781854714343.
  10. ^ "ST. KILDA: BELGIAN COLORS WORN, When the umpire's whistle calls the St. Kilda team to arms against South Melbourne [next Saturday] they will be in the full bloom of new colors — something like the gorgeous dahlias in the Alexandra Gardens. The public will cheer them as footballers, but probably the cheering will be more hearty because the colors are those of the brave and suffering Belgians — scarlet, yellow and black. Tho club decided last year to cast aside the old colors, which were those of tho German ruffians, pirates and baby-killers." (The Herald, (Friday, 16 April 1915), p.3.)
  11. ^ Goodwood, "Notes and Chat", The Argus, (Saturday, 29 May 1915), p.22, col.A.
  12. ^ Saturday's Matches: Some Close Finishes: Notes by Observer, The Argus, (Monday, 31 May 1915), p.6. col.A.
  13. ^ Champion Tobacco "Sportettes", The Canberra Times, (Friday, 23 July 1954), p.8, col.A.

References