Melbourne Cricket Ground - Richmond Football Club
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Richmond Football Club

Matthew RichardsonThe suburb of Richmond has always been synonymous with the formation of Australian football.

It was in a Richmond paddock that the first ever game was played, and it is in Richmond that the MCG is located.

It seemed only logical that Richmond should have its own football side, so in 1885 the Richmond club was formed. Always known as the Tigers, the club joined the VFL in 1908.

Often in the shadow of their more opulent MCG neighbours, the Tigers have fought hard to establish their own identity and have succeeded.

This has come about largely through their achievements at the MCG, both on Grand Final Day and as their playing home ground since 1965.

Richmond has quite an impressive overall record at the MCG having played (up to the start of the 2012 season) 618 games for 328 wins, 283 losses and seven draws, but they had to wait until 1920 to open their premiership account at the home of football.

After losing to Collingwood the previous year, the Tigers were keen on exacting revenge on the Pies. With the help of captain-coach and former Magpie Danny Minogue, the Tigers ran away with the game by 17 points.

They repeated the dose a year later, triumphing in the mud against favourites Carlton by four points.

The Tigers always relished the underdog tag and in 1932, after finishing runners-up five times in eleven years, triumphed in an epic clash against Carlton.

A massive MCG crowd of nearly 70,000 watched the two teams slog it out, with Richmond's Gordon Geddes showing true Tiger grit to play the second half with a broken jaw and help his side to a nine point win.

After two more premierships in 1934 and 1943, Tigers fans were to wait until 1967 for another triumph.

Led by Fred Swift, in a side containing club greats like Royce Hart, Francis Bourke, Kevin Bartlett, and Barry Richardson, the Tigers played a classic game of free-flowing football against Geelong.


After Richmond led comfortably at half-time, the Cats hit the front with four quick goals, but the Tigers steadied through the influence of Royce Hart, and took their first premiership in 24 years.

This was a golden era for the club as they went on to further MCG glory in '69, '73 and '74.

The Tigers' most recent premiership was in 1980, when they trounced Collingwood by 81 points.

Kevin Bartlett was the hero of the day, producing one of the memorable individual MCG performances, kicking seven goals and taking the Norm Smith Medal. It was a fitting reward for a man who went on to become the league record holder for the number of games played.

It has generally been a lean trot for the club since, only featuring in the finals three times in those 30 years.

Still, when the Tigers look to be on a roll, the fans come out of the woodwork to pack the MCG and provide an awesome inspiration for the 'yellow and black'.

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