It’s 30 years ago today since Richmond held its crucial Save Our Skins rally at the MCG.

On Sunday, August 26, just a couple of weeks after the Tigers launched their desperate, life-saving SOS campaign to raise one million dollars by October 31 that year, or be forced to fold, relocate or merge, 10,000 Yellow and Black devotees flocked to the MCG to hear a host of famous Club identities strongly back the survival plan.

The most famous Tiger of them all, Jack Dyer, was there. Initially, the then 76-year-old had been reluctant to speak, but when the enormity of his beloved Club’s dire (pardon the pun) financial situation hit home, he strode to the stage to a standing ovation and, in the highlight of the rally, proceeded to deliver a stirring speech, taking specific aim at the AFL.

Here is what the great ‘Captain Blood’, in his inimitable style, had to say . . .

“I look around today and think that they dare – dare is the word – to try and throw us out of the league. I think they must be moonstruck up the top there somewhere.

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Save our skins

In 1990 club president, Neville Crowe launched the Save Our Skins campaign that raised the necessary funds to keep Tigerland alive.

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“Thank God you all turned up. I was a bit frightened that they mightn’t turn up, that there was rain or something like that. But they’re from here from all over Victoria.

“God, I hope they write about that . . . You can tell them that there’s more here this morning than those two teams that they’ve got up there in Sydney (sic). Twice as many people here . . .

“I get horrified, I can’t sleep of a night.

“I can’t watch replays if Richmond get beaten. I can’t do any of those things. I don’t even buy the paper of a Monday morning. But if they bloody well win, I’ve got plenty of them, I’ll tell you that.

“They seem to think, up there in the ivory tower, that they might have found something here. They’ll all be level down there. They’ll all be in the five, in the six.

“There’s always got to be someone last and someone second last, someone third last. And when they wake up to that, perhaps they’ll get a bit of bloody sense.

“Thank you for coming along, don’t go away and forget to put in your pockets.

“Just give up the bingo for a while and just give up those racehorses for 10 weeks, and we’ll get out of it.”

Dyer’s powerful words certainly resonated with the Tiger faithful in attendance that day because about $300,000 was raised at the rally, which was a great start on the Club’s path to financial salvation.