9 February 1949 (age 74)
Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 21y 54d
Last game: 30y 204d
Height and weight
Height: 202 cm
Weight: 97 kg
|Club||League||Career span||Games||Goals||Avg||Win %||AKI||AHB||AMK||BV|
AFL: 8,222nd player to appear, 1,123rd most games played, 619th most goals kickedCollingwood: 707th player to appear, 173rd most games played, 77th most goals kickedRichmond: 773rd player to appear, 297th most games played, 162nd most goals kicked
A tall (202cm), comparatively thinly built (97kg) ruckman Bob Heard was something of a cult figure during the Collingwood phase of his career. Despite appearing ungainly he could produce good football and it was perhaps this dichotomy which gave rise to the fans' hero worship. If his appearances in the Magpies' senior team were limited to some extent by the presence at the club of two all time great ruckmen in the shape of Len Thompson and Graeme Jenkin he could nevertheless be counted on to give a good account of himself when selected. Indeed, as his career went on he began to achieve selection in the seniors more regularly as the Magpies went with three and sometimes four big men in games. (In 1971 Heard spent most of the season in the reserves and won the Gardiner Medal, awarded to the best and fairest player in that competition.)
Collingwood recruited Heard from VFA club Preston for whom he had starred in their 1968 and 1969 first division premiership wins. His eventual 106 VFL games for the Magpies between 1970 and 1975 included an appearance as nineteenth man in the infamous 1970 grand final in which Carlton scored a highly improbable come from behind victory. In addition to being a fine tap ruckman Bob Heard was an excellent overhead mark and a very good kick.
In 1976 Heard crossed to Richmond for whom he added a final 54 VFL games over four seasons. He then returned to his original club Preston where he rounded off his career.
Author - John Devaney