Dual Richmond premiership star Liam Baker overcame an initial injury concern in last night’s clash with Geelong at GMHBA Stadium to spark a spirited surge by the Tigers.

Baker left the field during the first quarter, and it seemed he might have been subbed out, further adding to Richmond’s injury woes.

But after a stint on the sidelines, he returned to the field and was pivotal in the Tigers taking a 29-point lead late in the second quarter with his strong, bold efforts through the midfield.


The 26-year-old veteran of 119 AFL games finished the match with a game-high 31 disposals, equal game-high 15 contested possessions, one goal, five score involvements, five clearances, five intercepts, six tackles and 344 metres gained.

Richmond coach Adem Yze paid tribute to Baker in his post-match press conference.

“We thought he might have done his ‘hammy’, so he went and checked it. He just had a little ‘corky’ in his glute, which was a positive,” Yze said.

“He had his little bit of time off the ground and then he came out and had 30-odd disposals.


“Early on, he had the team on his shoulders . . .

“He’s obviously a great leader of our footy club and we were really proud of his effort.”

Baker was rewarded for his performance with four votes from the coaches in the AFLCA Champion Player Award, while teammate Daniel Rioli, who finished with 20 disposals, six intercept possessions, four score involvements and three tackles, collected one vote.

The full voting details for the Round 12 Richmond v Geelong match are :

9 – Jack Bowes (Geelong)

9 – Max Holmes (Geelong)

6 – Oliver Dempsey (Geelong)

4 – Liam Baker (Richmond)

1 – Mitch Duncan (Geelong)

1 – Daniel Rioli (Richmond)