John Sattler

Stolen: John Sattler wearing the iconic jersey.
Source: The Daily Telegraph

RABBITOHS great John Sattler has declared that two signed letters – both of which claim he gave away his 1970 grand final jersey – were not penned by him.

The mystery surrounding Sattler’s stolen South Sydney jumper last night took its fifth twist in as many days when The Daily Telegraph obtained a pair of documents allegedly signed by the Bunnies legend.

Provided by HWL Ebsworth Lawyers, the letters belong to a mystery Sydneysider who insists the jersey he was auctioning on eBay for $30,000 is the real deal.

According to the documents, the iconic jumper was bought at auction by long-time Souths fans Deiter and Hanna Weyrauch – who Sattler confirms he knew.

The letters add weight to the theory that there are, in fact, two jerseys purported to be the famed 1970 jumper.

The first was in Sattler’s possession until stolen in 2000. The second was bought by the Weyrauch family and then, via Sports Memorabilia Australia, sold to the current owner.

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There is no suggestion the current owner had any idea the jumper he bought may not have been the bona fide jersey.

The first letter, dated November 18, 1999, states: “The South Sydney jumper … is the

jumper I was wearing at the 1970 grand final, which Souths won. It has my signature on the collar.

“I donated the jumper to the South Sydney Club in 1973 and it was auctioned at Redfern Oval the same year.”

The second letter, more than two years later, claims a report by The Daily Telegraph from December 2001 suggesting the jersey was stolen is false. It states: “That lost jersey was in fact from the 1971 grand final.

“I apologise for any concern this has caused you and I hope this clears up any confusion and settles the authenticity regarding your jersey.”

Yet Sattler last night said he had never signed any document relating to the 1970 jersey worn when he famously broke his jaw against Manly.

That top, he maintained, was stolen from Sydney memorabilia company Blazed In Glory in 2000.

“Never signed anything – never, ever,” Sattler said last night. “And I’m starting to get a little sick of the whole thing.

“There is no way I would sign anything regarding the 1970 jersey. There was no way I ever got rid of it. I’ve put my signature on to so many things over the years … but as for what you’re telling me, I wouldn’t have a clue.”

The Sattlers this week provided a photograph showing Jack Sattler – the Kangaroo great’s grandson – holding up the jersey shortly before his father, Scott, handed it over to be framed.

It hasn’t been seen since.

Lawyers for the eBay seller, known only as Peter, say their client is refusing to go public, having received a series of online threats since The Daily Telegraph broke the story on Saturday.

“Our client voluntarily produced the jersey to the police to assist their enquiries,” they said. They remain adamant the jersey in their client’s possession is the one Sattler wore 41 years ago. “The jersey said to be lost or stolen in 2001 was, we understand, worn by John Sattler in the 1971 grand final,” they added.

Sports Memorabilia Australia’s Michael Fahey, who oversaw the sale of the jersey from the Weyrauchs to the owner, insists it is the 1970 jersey.

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