Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
Robert Bawden

Known as
Bob Bawden

28 February 1917

22 July 1980 (aged 63)

Place of death
Brisbane, QLD (4000)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 22y 123d
Last game: 28y 185d

Height and weight
Height: 191 cm
Weight: 93 kg

Senior clubs
Oakleigh; Richmond; City

Jumper numbers
Richmond: 23

Recruited from
Leongatha Imperials (1935); Morwell (1939); Richmond (1946); City (1949)

Family links
Tom Bawden (Brother)

Bob Bawden

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV
Total1935, 1937-19501481881.27

AFL: 4,738th player to appear, 2,195th most games played, 1,000th most goals kickedRichmond: 387th player to appear, 133rd most games played, 68th most goals kicked

Bob Bawden, Morwell’s champion back man, best and fairest in Central Gippsland League in 1937, surprised Gippsland fans by appearing with Morwell against Korumburra on April 29, after having been highly spoken of at Richmond, where he had his name on the Tigers’ list. Bob told our representative, however, that football was only a game, and as he had a good position at Morwell, he could see no advantage in playing League football, unless the game provided him with a better position than he had.¹

Originally from Leongatha, ruckman Robert Bawden was a useful, if comparatively unheralded, member of Richmond 's strong early 1940s combinations. After a sojourn at Oakleigh and several seasons at Morwell, Bawden made his league debut for the Tigers in 1939, and for much of his seven season, 107-game VFL career he acted as a foil in the ruck for the great Jack Dyer. He was also a damaging player when resting in the forward lines, as his career tally of 107 goals attests. He was a member of the Tigers' losing grand final teams in 1940, 1942 and 1944 and lined up at full forward for the triumph over Essendon in the 1943 flag decider.

Bawden was one of Richmond's best players in the 1943 Grand Final victory over Essendon, and was also a member of the Tigers' losing grand final sides in 1942 against Essendon and 1944 versus Fitzroy. After leaving Richmond, Bawden spent five seasons in the Northern Tasmanian Football Association, captaining City from 1946 to 1948 and playing with Cornwall in 1949 and 1950.

Author - John Devaney with additional material from Andrew Gigacz


1. “Weekly Times”, 6/5/39, page 56. He later changed his mind, however, and threw in his lot with the Tigers.


Full Points Footy Publications, Crème de la Crème


* Behinds calculated from the 1965 season on.
+ Score at the end of extra time.