Selby Chinnery, his younger brother Jack and their father Archie played a combined total of 172 senior games for Norwood across 10 seasons without cracking a premiership.
Selby came into the league side in 1930 with three other talented youngsters, Perc McCallum, Harold Page and Tom Woodroofe, but they went down to Port Adelaide by a goal in the first semi-final that year. All four went on to represent South Australia but none of them enjoyed premiership success.
For the first three quarters of the 1933 grand final, Selby and Jack looked a good chance to beat the hoodoo before a gritty West Torrens ground out a 13.10 to 9.11 victory. Norwood wasted many chances through bad kicking and faulty handball. Jack did well in the back pocket but Selby had to switch from his familiar half-back flank to cover a Norwood weakness at centre wing. A consolation for Selby that year was his selection in the South Australian carnival team which was runner-up to Victoria in Sydney
Norwood struggled in 1934. Harry Krome resigned as captain halfway through the season and Selby Chinnery was elected in his place. Perc McCallum and Jack Chinnery were unavailable owing to injuries for Selby’s first match as captain and Norwood went down to Sturt at Norwood Oval, 15.13 to 13.9. Selby led his team to a three-point win over North Adelaide, 18.13 to 15.16, but that was his only success and Norwood finished seventh after five wins and 12 defeats.
Selby retired from football after that to concentrate on his career as an architect. As well as league he kicked two goals in 46 seconds match between 1930 and 1934. Jack, who played on to 1938, was killed in World War II when the Halifax bomber in which he was serving as a rear gunner was shot down over Belgium in 1944.
Selby was born at Norwood on 14 December 1909 to vigneron Archibald Chinnery and his wife Melinda, née Cocker. He attended Magill Primary School and St Peter’s College. He married Emily Young on the 26 February 1934. They lived at Linden Park and had three children. Selby died at Blackwood on 1 November 1985.
P Robins, D Cox, G Adams Sept 2021