The day Elton John saved Dean Jones from losing $10m | The Daily Star
02:37 PM, September 29, 2020 / LAST MODIFIED: 03:14 PM, September 29, 2020

The day Elton John saved Dean Jones from losing $10m

Ever since the sudden and shock passing of Australian cricket legend Dean Jones, stories from the icon's career have slowly filtered out.

This one comfortably takes the cake.

All the way back in 1999, Jones and his event management company were on the verge of a multimillion-dollar investment.

The deal would have seen them bring football giant's Manchester United Down Under, a team that featured English legend David Beckham.

It wasn't the first mega deal Jones' company had been involved with after they successfully brought the FIFA XI to the Australian shores for a match against the Socceroos as well as getting INXS back together ahead of the Sydney Olympics.



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But it was the Manchester United deal that almost saw Jones lose it all, if not for the intervention of music megastar Elton John.

On the verge of putting pen to paper on an investment of over $10 million to bring the football giants to Australia, Jones thankfully stepped out of the talks to go and see his long-time friend in his hotel room inside Melbourne's Crown Casino.

"I said, 'I'll tell you what, can we do this tomorrow, because I've got an appointment'," Jones said on Shane Watson's Lessons Learnt with the Greats podcast in June.

It was during his conversation with the music icon when Jones received the tip-off that eventually saved him from gambling everything away.

"I told Elton what date they were playing (in July) and he said, 'Dean, I've got a confidentiality agreement so I'm going into the next room. You need to look on my desk,'" Jones recalls John telling him.

"I walked across to the desk and there was the invitation for him to play at Beckham's wedding which happened to be the same (time).

"And I've gone, 'ohhhh, so half the team is going to be with Beckham!'"

The mail from John was enough for Jones to pull out of the deal and sell the rights to businessman Rene Rivkin. It panned out in the cricket legend's favour with several superstars failing to make the trip Down Under.

David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Roy Keane, Gary Neville and even legendary coach Sir Alex Ferguson all remained in England as the squad played two games in Sydney and Melbourne.

"I went back to them (United management) and said, 'is that date right?' I said, 'you've got nothing on?' They said, 'no.' And I knew they were lying," Jones told the Watson podcast.

"They didn't care. Not worried about advertising these guys' names and they don't turn up.

"Rene Rivkin was also trying to bid for it and I gave it to him for $200k and he ended up taking the heat.

"And half the team never turned up. You know what? I would have lost my house and everything … event management is a lot of fun, but it comes down to your networking."

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