Johnny Riley

  • Playing Career

Playing Career

Vital Statistics

Full Name
Johnny Edward Riley
Born
Thursday, 22nd June, 1939
Current Age
84 years and 331 days

Biography

St George junior came into first grade to partner the equally youthful Reg Gasnier during the club's unbeaten year in 1959. The two teenagers formed a great combination in the centres during their first year, playing for NSW and touring with the 1959-60 Kangaroos. (Incredibly, injury ruled both players out of the club's grand final win over Manly). Riley, who had been a non-playing reserve in the series against the Kiwis in 1959, made his sole Test appearance in the First Test against Great Britain as well as playing in 13 other matches. The remainder of his career did not reach those heights and his only other grand final appearance with the champion club was in 1962. Riley later played for Moorabbin in the Victorian RL competition during the mid-1960s
- ALAN WHITICKER

Playing Career Statistics

All statistics shown in this section are based only on data available in the RLP database, and are not necessarily a complete and/or 100% accurate representation of a player's career. This information should be used as a guide only. If you see a question mark (?), it denotes that the figure is not available.

To view a list of corresponding matches, click on the List button.

Competitions

Competition   App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
NSWRFL Premiership (NRL) 61 22 -   - 66 51 9 1 83.61% List
City vs Country Firsts 1 1 -   - 3 1 0 0 100.00% List
Interstate Matches 1 - -   - - 0 1 0 0.00% List
NSWRFL Finals 3 2 -   - 6 3 0 0 100.00% List
Tour Matches Australia 2 - -   - - 2 0 0 100.00% List
Test Series 1 - -   - - 1 0 0 100.00% List
The Ashes 1 - -   - - 1 0 0 100.00% List
Preseason Cup 11 2 -   - 6 8 1 2 72.73% List


International

Test Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Australia 1959-60 2 - -   - - 2 0 0 100.00% List


Representative

Australia - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Probables (AU) 1959 1 1 -   - 3 1 0 0 100.00% List
NSW Firsts 1959 1 - -   - - 0 1 0 0.00% List
NSW City Firsts 1959 1 1 -   - 3 1 0 0 100.00% List
Overall1959 3 2 0   0 6 2 1 0 66.67% List


Club Career

NSWRFL Premiership (NRL) - By Year

Team Season App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
St George NSWRFL 1959 13 10 -   - 30 13 0 0 100.00% List
St George NSWRFL 1960 10 3 -   - 9 6 4 0 60.00% List
St George NSWRFL 1961 16 4 -   - 12 13 3 0 81.25% List
St George NSWRFL 1962 13 2 -   - 6 10 2 1 76.92% List
St George NSWRFL 1963 2 1 -   - 3 2 0 0 100.00% List
St George NSWRFL 1964 7 2 -   - 6 7 0 0 100.00% List

NSWRFL Premiership (NRL) - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
St George 1959-64 61 22 -   - 66 51 9 1 83.61% List

Your Say

  • The Noctambulist
    22/05/2012

    Riley's RL top-grade career came to an abrupt halt at 25 in 1964 when he took an executive position in Melbourne, then still very much a League no-go city.

  • Anonymous
    28/01/2016

    I was privileged to see John Riley play alongside Reg Gasnier many times for St.George Rugby League club. They complemented each other perfectly and it was easy to see the great mutual respect that existed between them. The best centre pairing that has ever been. Reg Gasnier was a scoring machine and John Riley was a great tackler and always there in support. These are memories that will last until I die. Both were wonderful one club players....

  • [email protected]
    29/06/2017

    I played with Moorabbin the first year Johnny came to Victoria. I can recall him coaching the side but not as a playing coach. The side that year was the first civilian side to win the Vic RL premiership. The comp was made up of teams from each of the RAAF bases in victoria.

  • Peter Phelan
    14/04/2020

    In my memory Riley had a meteoric rise from Reserves to Kangaroo in that 59 season. Dont know if thats ever been done before or since.

  • Rod Tanner
    09/05/2020

    John &Gwen had two sons Andrew and Mark.
    Is Mark Rielly the son of John & Gwen ?

  • Terence Kelly
    11/08/2020

    I also played under John Riley at Moorabbin in about 1966. My name is Terry Kelly, related to Frank Kirkwood, and Barry Briggs, both also Moorrabbin players. Just wondering who you are?

  • JIM PEMBROKE
    21/09/2020

    I was in Year 6 with John at Kogarah P.S. He was proficient at football, cricket and athletics. It was competing in athletics where the friendly rivalry between John and Gas began. John played with Ramsgate United (Reg was with Renown United but showed his talent by playing with St George from the age of 15. Three grades, no age restrictions brought him up against many tough players until he made first grade in 1959. He was a supreme tackler.

  • Geoff Thomas
    20/03/2023

    I saw Johnny play live from 1959 many times for the fabulous Dragons of those years. He was wonderful in the centres with the incomparable Reg Gasnier

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Contributions: Shawn Dollin, Andrew Ferguson, Rugby League Tables, Greg Fiveash, Alan Katzmann, Paul Carter, Max Turner