John Nicholls (born 13 August 1939) is regarded one of Australian football’s greatest players. He represented Carlton from 1957 to 1964 in the Victorian Football League. He became the first Carlton footballer to play 300 games and was decaled the club’s greatest player. Nicholls wasn’t entirely tall, standing 189 centimeters, but he played as a ruckman. After retiring, he became a coach for Carlton, Glenelg and Coburg.
Greatest Sporting Achievements
John Nicholls became Carlton’s best and fairest Robert Reynolds Trophy five times. He became one of the twelve inaugural “Legends of the Australian Football Hall of Fame” in 1996. He was also named in the AFL Team of the Century, Carlton Best First Year Player in 1957 and became the Carlton Captain in 1963 and 1968 until 1974. He also received the 1968 Simpson Medal for best player for VIC v WA in Perth, Australia.
Why Was He So Good?
Despite his height, John Nicholls knew how to use his abilities and physique to the best possible effect. He was easily constant in moving skillfully and carefully from the opposing ruckmen with different physical features and qualities. Nicholls had a strange and perhaps an unmatched talent of extorting the utmost benefit from different circumstances on the field, no matter how seemingly disadvantageous.
What You May Not Know
- Nicholls has the 3rd-most games played and 12th-most goals kicked for Carlton.
- John Nicholls was named the club’s greatest player and gave a speech voicing out his opinion on the club during Carlton’s 150th anniversary celebration in June 2014.
Was he a legend?
Do you agree with John Nicholls being an AFL legend?
How would you rate their greatness? (from good to 'the best')
- More Australian Football legendary players
- Athlete Database home
- About the sport of Australian Football