Full Name: ROY WRIGHT
Date of Birth: 23/02/1929
Height: 188 cm ( 6-2 )
Weight: 103 kg ( 16-3 )
Debut: 27/07/1946, Round 14, St Kilda
Last Game: 04/07/1959, Round 10, South Melbourne
Total Games: 195
Total Goals: 127
Honours: Captain 1958-59, Club Best & Fairest 1951 Equal, 1952, 1954, 1957 , " Brownlow Medal " 1952, 1954, Victorian Representative Team 1952-57,1959 Games 18 Goals 20, All-Australian Team 1956.
Richmond Life Member 1955
Richmond Hall of Fame Member 2002
Richmond Team of Twentieth Century 1998
Australian Football Hall of Fame Member 1996
Total Games: 17
Total Goals: 10
Roy was a ruckman affectionately known as, “the Gentle Giant”. He had to overcome both illness and a disability in order to play league football. As a child, he was unable to play football as he was required to wear leg splints due to weak knees. He also suffered from rheumatic fever. It wasn’t until 1945, at the age of 16, that he was able to experience his first taste of competitive football with North Kew. In his debut year, he won the Eastern Suburbs Competition Best and Fairest award. Despite the early setbacks, he arrived at Richmond, from North Kew, as a big, awkward 17-year-old during 1946. He nearly transferred away from Richmond in the late 1940s after managing to play just 26 senior games between 1946 and 1949. This was mainly due to injury and the fact that Richmond had another “Brownlow Medallist”, Bill Morris, playing in the ruck. During this time, Roy played mostly in the back-pocket when playing with the seniors.
When Bill Morris left Richmond after the 1951 season, Roy blossomed as the club’s number one ruckman. He won his first “Brownlow Medal” the following year, 1952, and his second two years later in 1954. He also finished second in the 1957 “Brownlow Medal”. He tied for the club Best and Fairest award in 1951 and won the award outright in 1952, 1954 and 1957, as well as running equal second in 1956. He was vice captain between 1955 and 1957 and captain in 1958 and 1959. He was awarded Life Membership in 1955. He represented Victoria 18 times and was selected in the 1956 All-Australian side. He was eventually forced to retire due to a leg injury during the 1959 season.
In the February pre season of 1957, Wright received 9 stitches to his left wrist after severing minor tendons on the jagged edge of a oil drum while working in the garage. (The Age 14 Feb 1957, pg 12)
In 1996 he was inducted into the AFL’s Hall of Fame.
As a footballer Roy was scrupulously fair with his only object being the ball. Despite his powerful 16 stone or 102 kilogram frame he used his weight fairly in marking and rucking contests. During the 1950s he had few equals in the VFL and certainly no ruckmen were better than him. Roy had a good spring and was a superb palmer of the ball, and his ten inch hand span gave him a great advantage. He had a great understanding with his rover, the late Billy Wilson. Roy was also a strong mark and a magnificent long dropkick and puntkick. He was recorded as kicking a punt kick 73.15metres or 80 yards against Geelong at the Punt Road Oval in 1954. A useful goalkicker, his highest individual goal tally was 4 which he kicked twice, once against Collingwood in Round 7 of 1954, and Footscray in Round 17 of 1952.
He was one of the most popular Richmond players of his era and his popularity hasn’t waned over the years. Richmond supporters still flocked for his autograph at one of the club’s fund-raising efforts. After retiring as a player he became a panellist on the A.B.C Football Show. His easy-going nature and permanent smile made him very popular with the show’s viewers.
North Kew 1945-46 ( Honours - Club Best & Fairest 1945, Eastern Suburbs League Competition Best & Fairest 1945 ).