There was just one Tiger that had not played in a premiership before Saturday night's roaring triumph over Geelong – but Noah Balta has changed that now.

Just a day after his 21st birthday, the hulking defender completed his incredible rise, playing one of the more versatile Grand Finals in memory to help Richmond to glory.

07:55 Mins
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GF: Match highlights

Watch the highlights from the Grand Final win over Geelong.

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Stationed on Cats spearhead Tom Hawkins for much of the night, Balta was also thrown into the ruck to back-up Toby Nankervis and even spent some time in the forward half during the 31-point win.

Speaking just hours after the final siren, Balta said it was the best birthday present he could ever wish for.

"I was considering having a beer yesterday (Friday) just because it was my 21st … I'm rapt I can drink double as much now," he laughed.

"I'm just lost for words to be honest.

"I know everyone playing has won a premiership before and I just tried to think of it as another game, because it is.

"Before the game you run a lot of mental images of what it would look like, but I tried to stay away from that."

Balta's night copped a little adversity when fellow defender Nick Vlastuin was stretchered off inside the first six minutes following a collision with an inadvertent Patrick Dangerfield elbow.

With the Cats on top for much of the first half, Richmond's defence had to hold back the tide to keep its team alive.

01:33 Mins
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GF: The 2020 premiership cup presentation

Ash Barty presents Trent Cotchin and Damien Hardwick with the 2020 premiership cup.

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Balta initially had some difficulty with Hawkins, but backed his instincts like he has all season.

"In the off-season I just started smashing weights," he said.

"(I had to work on my) aerial contests because that's the thing that will get me a game.

"I just focused on that and I tried to be the best in the league at it, so that when I come up on against players like (Charlie) Dixon and Hawkins, I've got a strength behind me that I can play that role.

"I can now say I was a ruck, forward and backline premiership player, so it's good.

"This culture is incredible. I wouldn't want to be anywhere else.

"I love this place."