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The Stab kick discovered in Tasmania in 1902. So from 1902 no one did anything extra with the stab kick till Jim, a school kid, converted it into a stab punt in May1949. The stab punt invented by Jim, Aged 15 years, 5ft 2in(157.48 cm.), weighing 8 and 1/4 stone (52.5 kg), and playing for the Mount Evelyn First Eighteen in the Yarra Valley Football League.

Young footballer invents new kick to counter muddy conditions. In 1949 15-year-old Jim Johnson and his older brother Charlie joined Mt Evelyn Football Club, Second XVIII. Mt Evelyn Football Ground's surface was then uneven and often very muddy. Studying the Sporting Globe Football Book (1948), Jim Johnson adapted Jack Dyer's 'crazy' Drop-Punt … 'the silliest looking kick in football history' (p.49) into an effective Drop- Punt (field pass) and later invented a Stab Punt (pass), both kicks being suitable to Mt Evelyn's mud. These kicks were able to be kicked at full pace with accuracy; they are in constant use today in Australian Rules football. Playing just three games, Jim won the 1949 Second-Best-and-Fairest trophy (The T.O. Millard Trophy). Theo Millard (Jim's uncle) was Mt Evelyn's major employer at Millard's' Timber and Trading. Jim, 157.5cm and weighing 51kg, was promoted to the first XVIII, winning the umpire's vote for best player on three occasions; joined Ringwood Football Club as First Rover for the First XVIII in 1950; and in 1960 played in a Premiership team for Croydon. 'Johnson was outstanding in the mud with clever turning and accurate disposal.' The Ringwood Mail, August 1951. Journalists had trouble finding the correct name for Johnson's Stab Punt. 'Johnson sent his delightful little drop punt passdirect to Manfield'. Frank Casey, The Post, September 8, 1960. 'Johnson should write a book on stab kicking - he has found the lost art'. Davey Crocket, The Ringwood Mail, September 8, 1960. Jim Johnson's story appeared in the Face to Face Exhibition at The Lilydale Museum, 13 October to 13 November 2011.

See Stab Punt Jim on Google for further information.

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Q: Who converted the stab kick into stab punt in Australian rules football?
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