We continue our special holiday season series at richmondfc.com.au, where we ask Tiger fans to select the best player to have worn each of the most significant guernsey numbers in the Club’s history. To assist in your quest, we have profiled those players who have racked up a minimum of 50 games in the number. The game totals and years listed relate to those played while wearing the specific number, not total Richmond career numbers. Today, it’s the turn of No. 8.
Dick Clay – 213 games, 1966-1976
One of the most talented and versatile players to ever represent Richmond on the field of battle. Started his league career with the Tigers as a key forward, was a star wingman in the 1967 and 1969 premiership sides, then turned into an elite full-back of the competition, producing fine football there in the Club’s back-to-back premierships of 1973-1974. Had blistering pace, was a strong mark, and a magnificent, long kick.
Michael Roach – 200 games, 1977-1989
Transformed from a skinny wingman in his early days at Richmond, after being recruited from Tasmania, into a superstar spearhead. Became just the second player in Tigerland history to achieve the coveted 100-goal milestone in a season, when he kicked 112 in the Club’s 1980 premiership year. Was extremely agile for his size, a spectacular high mark, and a deadly accurate drop-punt kick for goal. Could roost the ball a long way, too. Seven-time winner of Richmond’s leading goalkicker award and a Tigers’ Hall of Fame inductee.
Allan Geddes – 182 games, 1925-1935
A brilliant wingman, renowned for his deft use of the stab-pass, superb balance and ruthless attitude, combined with an ice-cool temperament. Was a key member of Richmond’s 1932 and 1934 premiership sides and played in the 1927, 1929, 1931 and 1933 Grand Finals with the Tigers. Captained the Club in 1927, 1928 and 1930, and won the Best and Fairest in 1926.
Jack Riewoldt – 180 games, 2007-2015
Richmond’s first pick in the 2006 AFL National Draft (No. 13 overall) has developed into one of the competition’s best forwards. Is strong overhead, excellent at ground level, and a fine kick for goal. Has won the Coleman Medal twice (in 2010 and 2012), the Jack Dyer Medal (in 2010), and is a dual All-Australian representative (2010 and 2015). He’s kicked 50 goals or more for the past six years in-a-row, which is an all-time record achievement at Tigerland.
Laird Smith – 66 games, 1939-1941 & 1945
Speedy rover/wingman/half-forward with good goal sense, who was recruited from St Kilda. His time at Richmond was interrupted due to the Second World War. Was a member of the Tigers’ 1940 Grand Final team.
Frank Ryan – 62 games, 1951-1957
Lightly-built wingman, who moved well across the ground. Was a member of the Club’s reserve-grade premiership sides in 1954 and 1955.
Ken Albiston – 58 games, 1946-1951
Talented rover/small forward. Kicked five goals in his first full game of senior league football in the final round of the 1946 season. Continued to be dangerous around the goals throughout his time at Tigerland.
Mark Merenda – 53 games, 1996-2000
Injuries, unfortunately, prevented him from maximising the considerable talent he possessed during his playing stint with Richmond. Was initially used in a variety of positions by the Tigers, before settling on a wing. Had plenty of pace, could take a big mark, was a good kick with either foot, and had a bit of X-factor about him.