Richmond’s draw with Hawthorn in the final home-and-away round of the 2021 season added to the list of bizarre finishes in MCG matches between the two teams throughout AFL/VFL history.
The Tigers, trailing by 31 points with just over six minutes to go in last Saturday’s clash, staged a remarkable fightback to snatch a draw after veteran star key forward Jack Riewoldt cleverly toe-poked the ball through for a goal.
It was the first time Richmond and Hawthorn had played out a draw, although they came incredibly close back in Round 8, 1968.
When the final siren sounded on that Queen’s Birthday Monday at the MCG, the scoreboard showed both teams tied on 11.15 (81).
Fans had left the ground, the players were back in the dressing-rooms, before word came through that the drawn result had been changed and the Tigers had won by one point.
Hawthorn was wrongly credited with a point by the operators of the scoreboard about halfway through the last quarter and that error was not picked up until the two goal umpires conferred post-match, as is the norm.
Nine years later, in an Easter Monday MCG encounter, second-year player Jimmy Jess came off the bench, as the 20th man, to lift Richmond to a thrilling victory.
With the Tigers trailing midway through the final term and seemingly headed for defeat, coach Barry Richardson turned to Jess to provide a bit of magic, and “The Ghost” responded brilliantly.
He booted three goals, including the match-winning one after leaping over a nest of Hawk defenders and then coolly converting.
And, in Round 5 of the 2003 season at the ‘G’, Richmond produced its greatest comeback in a match, overcoming a 51-point deficit during the latter stages of the second quarter to win by 20 points.
Star midfield pair Wayne Campbell (29 disposals, two goals, three Brownlow Medal votes) and Kane Johnson (30 disposals, one goal, two Brownlow votes) were the catalysts of the amazing Tiger fightback that day.