Robert Harvey (footballer)
|Full name||Robert Harvey|
|Date of birth||21 August 1971|
|Place of birth||Seaford, Victoria|
|Height/Weight||181 cm / 84 kg|
|1988–2008||St Kilda||383 (215)|
1 Playing statistics correct to end of 2008 season.
Robert Jeffrey Harvey (born 21 August 1971) is a former Australian rules football player for the St Kilda Football Club in the Australian Football League (AFL). He is the senior assistant coach at the Collingwood Football Club, having joined Collingwood at the end of the 2011 season as an assistant coach.
Harvey was recognised as one of the top 50 players of all time in The Australian Game of Football, a book commissioned by the AFL in 2008 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of Australian rules football. The list was compiled by Herald Sun journalist Mike Sheahan. Harvey was known for his running ability and considered one of the best short passes of 15 to 30 metres in the history of the game. He holds St Kilda's record for most career games. At his retirement, at the end of the 2008 AFL season, he had played the third-highest total career games in league history, a total of 383 games.
Harvey won numerous individual awards and medals during his playing career. He won consecutive Brownlow Medals, the league's highest individual honour, in 1997 and 1998. He won St Kilda's best and fairest award – now called the Trevor Barker Award – in 1992, 1994, 1997 and 1998. He was selected in the All-Australian team eight times, with his first All-Australian award being in 1992 and his last in 2003. He won three E. J. Whitten Medals, awarded to the player judged best player on the ground for Victoria in State of Origin matches; the 1997 AFL Players Association Most Valuable Player Award (now known as the Leigh Matthews Trophy); and the Michael Tuck Medal for player judged best on ground in the 2004 pre-season cup final. In 2012 he was inducted in the Australian Football Hall of Fame. On 24 September 2013, Harvey was named the AFL’s Assistant Coach of the Year at the AFL Coaches Association 
Harvey is the grandson of former Australian test cricketer Merv Harvey and grandnephew of Neil Harvey who was Australia's leading runscorer and century-maker behind Don Bradman. His younger brother, Anthony Harvey, played four games for St Kilda in 1994 before captaining Norwood to the 1997 SANFL premiership.
Early career: 1988–1993
Harvey was recruited from St Kilda's then VCFL zone, from Seaford and played his first senior game for St Kilda on 6 August 1988 against Footscray at the Western Oval in Round 19 of the 1988 VFL season.
Harvey played in the 1991 St Kilda team that qualified for the finals series for the first time since 1973.
In 1992 he was selected to play State Of Origin for Victoria against South Australia in 1992 and won the E. J. Whitten Medal for best player on the ground. He was also a vital player in St Kilda team that qualified for that year's final series and had the club's first finals' win since 1973. He won St Kilda's 1992 award for the best and fairest player (now called the Trevor Barker Award) and was selected in the Australian Team for the first time.
Rising career: 1994–1996
In 1994 he played his 100th premiership season match against North Melbourne in Round 2. He also won his second St Kilda best and fairest award and was selected in the All-Australian Team for a second time.
In 1995 he was again selected in the All-Australian Team for a third selection.
Harvey played in St Kilda’s 1996 Ansett Australia Cup winning side, the club's first pre-season cup win. He was selected to play State of Origin for Victoria against The Allies in 1996 and won a third E.J. Whitten Medal for best player on the ground.
He was also selected for the fourth time in the All-Australian Team.
Brownlow Medals and captain: 1997–2003
Harvey played in 22 of 22 matches in the 1997 AFL Premiership Season home and away rounds in which St Kilda Football Club qualified in first position for the 1997 AFL Finals Series, winning the club’s second Minor Premiership and first McClelland Trophy.
St Kilda qualified for the 1997 AFL Grand Final after qualifying and preliminary finals wins. He played in the 1997 AFL Grand Final in which St Kilda were defeated by 31 points.
Harvey gained 756 disposals in 1997 which, at the time, was the highest single-season tally on record – an average of 30 possessions per game. He was recognised for his excellent season with numerous awards. He again won St Kilda's best and fairest award and was also selected again in the 1997 All-Australian Team – his fifth All-Australian award. He also won the 1997 AFL Players Association Most Valuable Player Award (now the Leigh Matthews Trophy) and the league's highest individual award the Brownlow Medal. Chris Grant gained the most votes however, he was ineligible to win the award due to a one-match suspension for striking Hawthorn's Nick Holland.
Harvey played in the St Kilda Football Club side that again qualified for the 1998 Final Series. He played his 200th premiership season match against West Coast in Round 21 at Waverley Park. St Kilda was eliminated from the 1998 Finals Series after two consecutive Final Series losses.
Harvey gained 501 kicks in 1998 which, at the time, was the highest single-season tally on record. He again won the league's highest individual award the Brownlow Medal for the second consecutive season. As of 2014, Harvey is the last man to win two consecutive Brownlow Medals.
He won the Trevor Barker Award for St Kilda's best and fairest player for a consecutive year – his fourth best and fairest award. He was also again selected in the year's All-Australian Team, his sixth All-Australian award.
Harvey was selected in the 1999 All-Australian Team – the 6th consecutive year he received an All-Australian selection and his 7th career All-Australian Award.
Harvey was Captain of the St Kilda Football Club during the 2001 and 2002 AFL Premiership Seasons. He was selected in the 2003 All-Australian Team his eighth All-Australian award. He was named in St Kilda's Team of the Century (1900–1999) in 2003.
Later career and records: 2004–2007
Harvey played in St Kilda’s 2004 Wizard Home Loans Cup final winning side – the club's second pre-season cup win. He was judged best player on the ground in the final and awarded the Michael Tuck Medal.
St Kilda won a then club record 10 consecutive matches in the first 10 rounds of the 2004 AFL season. The club went on to qualify for the finals inside the top four.
After a qualifying final loss and a semi-final win, Harvey played his 300th game and became the fourth player to play 300 games for St Kilda, in a preliminary final against Port Adelaide. St Kilda were eliminated from the finals series after a six point loss.
In Round 7 against Geelong, in front of a near full house at Docklands Stadium, Harvey broke the all-time games record for St Kilda (until then held by Nathan Burke) when he played in his 324th premiership season match. To celebrate the Saints wore special guernseys with Harvey's silhouetted image in the centre.
21st season and retirement: 2008
In 2008 Harvey became the only player to ever play in 21 consecutive VFL/AFL seasons. At 37 years of age he played in 24 of St Kilda's 25 premiership season matches – including three finals, averaging 21 disposals per game. He had 31 disposals in another best on ground performance in St Kilda's Round 13 win against Fremantle.
St Kilda qualified for the 2008 finals series inside the top four for the third time in five years. After a qualifying final loss and a semi-final win, Harvey lined up for St Kilda in what turned out to be his final game in the AFL on 20 September 2008 in a preliminary final against Hawthorn at the Melbourne Cricket Ground which Hawthorn won by 54 points, 18.10 (118) to 9.10 (64). Harvey was chaired off the ground by team mates Lenny Hayes and Max Hudghton to a respectful ovation, while players and officials from both sides formed a guard of honour. After the game a tribute to his long career was played on the big screen.
Harvey ended his career having played 383 games at the top level over 21 seasons, from the age of 16 until he was 37, the second longest senior career by seasons in VFL/AFL history. The only players to have played over 400 games in the VFL/AFL, Michael Tuck and Kevin Bartlett, both expressed their disappointment at what they both thought was a premature retirement and believed Harvey could have followed in their footsteps and reached the 400 game milestone.
Harvey received 215 Brownlow Medal votes during his career, the second most of any player in league history. He was also the only player in league history to have received Brownlow Medal votes in more than 100 games.
He holds the record for most games played without winning a premiership but did participate in 17 finals series matches, including one grand final.
|Led the league for the Season only*|
|Led the league after finals only*|
|Led the league after Season and Finals*|
*10 games required to be eligible.
|Totals||Averages (per game)|
Honours and achievements
|Brownlow Medal votes|
|Green / Bold = Won|
- Brownlow Medal: 1997, 1998
- Trevor Barker Award (St Kilda Best & Fairest): 1992, 1994, 1997, 1998
- Leigh Matthews Trophy (AFLPA MVP Award): 1997
- All-Australian: 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2003
- Australian Football Media Association Player of the Year Award: 1997
- Herald Sun Player of the Year Award: 1997
- Michael Tuck Medal: 2004
On 10 October 2008 it was announced that Harvey was being appointed as a development and fitness coach at the Carlton Football Club from 2009. On 2 November 2009 he was promoted from development coach to midfield coach at Carlton and served as a more direct assistant coach under Brett Ratten.
It was formally announced by the Carlton and St Kilda Football Clubs, on 13 September 2010, that Harvey had accepted an offer to return to St Kilda as an assistant coach, beginning with the 2011 pre-season. Harvey will coach the St Kilda midfield.
Following Ross Lyon's departure from the Saints in mid-September 2011, Harvey assumed the role as caretaker head coach whilst the search for a new senior coach commences at St Kilda.
On being overlooked for St Kilda's senior coaching role Harvey was released from his assistant coaching obligations with St Kilda.
Harvey joined the Collingwood Football Club in October 2011 as Midfield Coach, under Nathan Buckley and was promoted to Senior Assistant Coach during 2013. On 24 September 2013, Harvey was named the AFL’s Assistant Coach of the Year at the AFL Coaches Association 
Harvey is married to Danielle Harvey, who appeared on Fox Footy's "Living With Footballers" before it was cancelled at the end of 2004. They have three children; a son, Connor, and two daughters, Remi and Alyssa.
- "Saints set to choose between head and heart" by Ashley Browne, AFL website, 1 November 2013. Retrieved 2 November 2013.
- "Mike Sheahan’s top 50 players" by AFL, AFL website, 6 March 2008. Retrieved 2 November 2013.
- McNicol, Adam (13 June 2012). "Super Saint".
- "AFL 1996 Ansett Cup Grand Final – St Kilda v Carlton". Slattery Media Group. 23 March 1996. Retrieved 7 November 2009.
- "1997 Season Scores and Results – Ladder". AFL Tables. Retrieved 7 November 2009.
- The wash-up of Gary Ablett's injury, The Roar, 7 July 2014
- "AFL 2004 Wizard Cup Grand Final – Geelong v St Kilda". Slattery Media Group. 13 March 2004. Retrieved 7 November 2009.
- "AFL 2004 Wizard Cup Grand Final – Geelong v St Kilda – Michael Tuck presents the Michael Tuck Medal to Robert Harvey". Slattery Media Group. 13 March 2004. Retrieved 7 November 2009.
- "St Kilda wins NAB cup". The Age (Melbourne). 8 March 2008. Retrieved 7 November 2009.
- "Saints are NAB Cup Champions in 2008". Jeld-Wen. 8 March 2008. Retrieved 7 November 2009.
- Sheahan, Mike; Harvey 'could play 400 games'; Fox Sports Australia; 22 August 2008
- "AFL Tables Brownlow Medal Career Votes". AFL Tables. 3 November 2009. Retrieved 3 November 2009.
- Niall, Jake (14 September 2010). "Harvey back with Saints as Blues shed three assistants". The Age (Melbourne).
- Windley, Matt (21 October 2011). "Saints let Robert Harvey walk". Herald Sun. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
- Robert Harvey's statistics from AFL Tables