Robert Murphy (footballer)

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Robert Murphy
Bob Murphy 18.02.17.jpg
Murphy warming up prior to a pre-season game in February 2017
Personal information
Full name Robert Murphy
Date of birth (1982-06-09) 9 June 1982 (age 34)
Original team(s) Warragul / Gippsland Power
Draft No. 13, 1999 national draft
Height / weight 186 cm / 82 kg
Position(s) Defender
Club information
Current club Western Bulldogs
Number 2
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
2000– Western Bulldogs 296 (173)
Representative team honours
Years Team Games (Goals)
2008 Victoria 1 (1)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of round 1, 2017.
Career highlights
Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com

Robert "Bob" Murphy (born 9 June 1982) is a professional Australian rules footballer playing for the Western Bulldogs in the Australian Football League (AFL). Renowned for his silky skills[1] and leadership qualities, Murphy has also proven himself a versatile player, equally capable of playing in attack or in defence depending on the situation. He was appointed as the Bulldogs' captain for 2015 following the departure of predecessor Ryan Griffen.[2] Following the retirement of Brent Harvey at the end of the 2016 season, Murphy is the last remaining active AFL player from any draft in the 20th century, and is the oldest active player in the AFL.

Early career[edit]

Murphy is the third and youngest child of John and Monica Murphy. Both parents belonged formerly to Catholic orders, John as a priest and Monica as a nun. He has one brother, Ben, and a sister, Bridget.[3]

AFL career[edit]

2000–2004[edit]

Murphy was drafted to the Western Bulldogs with pick 13 in the 1999 National Draft. After spending much of the 2000 season developing his slim frame,[4] he made his debut in Round 19 against Carlton at Princes Park, gathering 13 disposals and kicking a goal in a thrilling 3-point victory.[5] In 2001 he was nominated for the AFL Rising Star award in round 16 after playing St Kilda.[1]

2005–present[edit]

Murphy in 2008

In 2005, under new coach Rodney Eade, Murphy cemented a place as a small centre half forward. He kicked 33 goals from this position and his overhead marking and leading ability were invaluable to the team. As part of the leadership group he led his younger team mates by great example across the half forward line.

On 26 May 2006 Murphy injured his left knee during a horrible collision in the Bulldogs' 34-point loss to Collingwood. This injury caused him to miss the remainder of the 2006 season, including what would have been his first finals series. After successful reconstruction, he returned to action in the 2007 NAB Cup series in February 2007. He injured his right knee early in the 2008 season, but played on for the remainder of the season, before undergoing surgery to repair a damaged patellar tendon in September 2008.[6]

Murphy was back to form resembling his best in 2010, when he posted his second top-five finish in the club best and fairest. He spent more time across half-back, where his disposal and decision-making were up to his usual high standard. In games against Essendon and Fremantle he collected a career-best 28 disposals. He missed three games mid-year with a knee injury which was again aggravated in the preliminary final, requiring post-season surgery.

In 2011 he had one of his best ever seasons, finishing second in the Bulldogs' best and fairest award,[7] and earning his first selection in an All-Australian team, being named on a half-back flank.[8]

In 2015 He was named captain of the year at the AFLPA awards becoming the 4th player to win the award in his first year as a captain and was also named captain of the all Australian team becoming the first ever player to have collected both honours in the same season.

On 10 April 2016, in the final minutes of the Bulldogs three-point loss to Hawthorn, Murphy sustained a knee injury while contesting a mark in the Hawks' forward-50. Scans later revealed he had injured his knee and had sustained a season-ending ruptured anterior cruciate ligament. Murphy later confirmed that he would play on for the Dogs in the 2017 season,[9] and he ultimately missed the club's premiership win in October. Easton Wood was named as his replacement as captain.

Statistics[edit]

Statistics are correct to the end of the 2016 season[10]
Legend
 G  Goals  B  Behinds  K  Kicks  H  Handballs  D  Disposals  M  Marks  T  Tackles
Season Team # Games G B K H D M T G B K H D M T
Totals Averages (per game)
2000 Western Bulldogs 22 3 1 0 13 7 20 4 1 0.3 0.0 4.3 2.3 6.7 1.3 0.3
2001 Western Bulldogs 2 16 2 0 105 60 165 45 16 0.1 0.0 6.6 3.8 10.3 2.8 1.0
2002 Western Bulldogs 2 19 5 6 196 94 290 93 27 0.3 0.3 10.3 4.9 15.3 4.9 1.4
2003 Western Bulldogs 2 22 5 3 273 101 374 98 31 0.2 0.1 12.4 4.6 17.0 4.5 1.4
2004 Western Bulldogs 2 19 16 8 218 69 287 85 40 0.8 0.4 11.5 3.6 15.1 4.5 2.1
2005 Western Bulldogs 2 22 33 19 284 77 361 172 26 1.5 0.9 12.9 3.5 16.4 7.8 1.2
2006 Western Bulldogs 2 9 13 12 97 22 119 70 11 1.4 1.3 10.8 2.4 13.2 7.8 1.2
2007 Western Bulldogs 2 17 19 13 188 45 233 110 23 1.1 0.8 11.1 2.6 13.7 6.5 1.4
2008 Western Bulldogs 2 24 34 18 321 108 429 209 42 1.4 0.8 13.4 4.5 17.9 8.7 1.8
2009 Western Bulldogs 2 16 10 15 186 85 271 128 20 0.6 0.9 11.6 5.3 16.9 8.0 1.3
2010 Western Bulldogs 2 21 8 7 281 122 403 135 22 0.4 0.3 13.4 5.8 19.2 6.4 1.0
2011 Western Bulldogs 2 21 6 4 306 128 434 77 36 0.3 0.2 14.6 6.1 20.7 3.7 1.7
2012 Western Bulldogs 2 21 2 0 295 125 420 78 33 0.1 0.0 14.0 6.0 20.0 3.7 1.6
2013 Western Bulldogs 2 19 13 7 296 122 418 88 43 0.7 0.4 15.6 6.4 22.0 4.6 2.3
2014 Western Bulldogs 2 22 4 5 294 158 452 91 39 0.2 0.2 13.4 7.2 20.5 4.1 1.8
2015 Western Bulldogs 2 21 2 2 324 147 471 96 32 0.1 0.1 15.4 7.0 22.4 4.6 1.5
2016 Western Bulldogs 2 3 0 1 55 29 84 19 6 0.0 0.3 18.3 9.7 28.0 6.3 2.0
Career 295 173 120 3732 1499 5231 1598 448 0.6 0.4 12.7 5.1 17.7 5.4 1.5

Personal life[edit]

He is married to wife Justine, and has three children – a son, Jarvis, and two daughters, Frankie and Delilah.[11]

Murphy features frequently in the media. He writes a weekly column in the sport section of The Age newspaper. An article he wrote about playing against Steve Johnson[12] earned him a highly commended prize in the 2012 Australian Football Media Association awards.[13]

He was formerly a regular panelist on the AFL 360 television talk show on Fox Footy. He is now a popular frequent guest of the show while not a regular panelist.

References[edit]

External links[edit]