Bradley John Hardie
10 October 1962 (age 60)
Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 22y 171d
Last game: 29y 311d
Height and weight
Height: 181 cm
Weight: 88 kg
|Club||League||Career span||Games||Goals||Avg||Win %||AKI||AHB||AMK||BV|
AFL: 9,582nd player to appear, 1,278th most games played, 341st most goals kickedFootscray: 755th player to appear, 264th most games played, 205th most goals kickedBrisbane: 6th player to appear, 56th most games played, 12th most goals kickedCollingwood: 936th player to appear, 1,068th most games played, 736th most goals kicked
Brad Hardie is perhaps best remembered for being one of the most highly decorated footballers of all time. A member of South Fremantle's 1980 premiership team, for whom he booted three goals from a forward pocket after starting on the interchange bench, Hardie also won South's fairest and best award in 1982. He won both the Tassie Medal and a Simpson Medal (for Western Australia against Victoria) in 1984 and joined Footscray the following year, causing a sensation by winning the 1985 Brownlow Medal after a series of eye-catching, tear away performances from the back pocket. His fine form continued in 1986 when he created history by becoming the first, and to date only, player ever to win two Tassie Medals. For good measure, he also won a second Simpson Medal after another best afield performance against the Vics.
A highly publicised contretemps with Footscray coach Michael Malthouse precipitated Hardie's departure from the Western Oval and the 1987 season saw him taking the field at Carrara with the fledgling Brisbane Bears. However, neither there nor with Collingwood, where he spent the 1991 and 1992 seasons, did he consistently recapture his Brownlow and Tassie Medal winning form.
Overall, and perhaps ironically, given the fact that he was the recipient of so many awards, the consensus of opinion on Hardie's career would possibly be that he under-achieved. Nevertheless, during his peak years of the mid-1980s, with his trademark long-sleeved jumper¹, flame red hair, and effervescent dashes out of the backlines, he was one of Australia's most instantly recognisable, and highly talented, footballers.
Author - John Devaney
1. Hardie habitually wore a long-sleeved playing jumper in order to hide from view the scars which covered his arms, legacy of serious burns received as a child.