Former Richmond star full-forward Jeff Hogg played on some extremely good full-backs throughout his fine 144-game, 306-goal career at Tigerland from 1986-93 – the likes of Stephen Silvagni, Danny Frawley, Chris Langford, Rick Kennedy, Mick Martyn and Ashley McIntosh.
That’s why the comments he made about current-day, talented, young Richmond full-back Noah Balta, on the latest episode of the Club’s podcast Talking Tigers, have such credibility.
“I wouldn’t want to be playing full-forward on Noah Balta at the moment,” Hogg said.
“I’d give him a miss.
“He’s obviously going pretty well.”
Balta, a member of Richmond’s 2021 premiership side on his 21st birthday, is regarded as one of the best young key defenders in the competition.
He reinforced that view with his performance in the Tigers’ Dreamtime victory over Essendon at Perth’s Optus Stadium last Saturday night – 16 disposals, four marks, six intercepts, a game-high seven rebound-50s, six one-percenters, 492 metres gained and a superb running goal from 50 metres out.
At the midway mark of the 2021 season, Balta is averaging 13.1 disposals, 4.7 marks, 5.8 intercepts, 3.1 rebound-50s, 3.8 one-percenters and 301.4 metres gained.
Considering Balta has played only 42 games of AFL football, his upside is enormous.
And Jeff Hogg will enjoy watching Balta’s progress with Richmond from a distance.