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During its comparatively fleeting involvement in the SANFL it is doubtful if the Woodville Football Club produced a more prodigious all round talent than Malcolm Jack Blight. In two separate stints at Oval Avenue Blight played a total of 163 games, won the 1972 Magarey Medal, was twice named Woodville's best and fairest player, made 7 appearances for South Australia earning All Australian selection on two occasions separated by thirteen years, and, for good measure, topped the SANFL goalkicking in 1985, his final league season, with 126 goals.
In between he spent a decade with North Melbourne where he became arguably the most celebrated South Australian to transfer to the VFL up to that point. His record while in Melbourne is worth summarising:
member of premiership sides in 1975 and 1977
member of North's 1980 night premiership team
1978 Brownlow Medallist
7 interstate appearances for the VFL including 2 as captain
4 times club leading goalkicker
Coleman Medallist in 1982
played 180 club games including 22 consecutive finals appearances.
The bare facts reveal nothing of the artistry, power and genius of Blight's play, however. Thankfully, his career coincided with the onset of the video age, and so a fair number of his more memorable feats have been recorded for posterity.
If Malcolm Blight the player was among the greatest to have adorned the game, Malcolm Blight the coach was no slouch either. After proving himself the most successful coach in Woodville's brief and predominantly ignominious history, he steered a hitherto under-achieving Geelong side to three grand finals, before returning home to South Australia and masterminding the first two premierships in the history of the Adelaide Crows. A brief stint at St Kilda was less successful, but his achievements with the Crows would doubtless have been sufficient to earn him the keys to the city of Adelaide for life.
Author - John Devaney
Full Points Footy's SA Football Companion