27 November 1985 (age 37)
Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 19y 237d
Last game: 34y 296d
Height and weight
Height: 183 cm
Weight: 88 kg
|Club||League||Career span||Games||Goals||Avg||Win %||AKI||AHB||AMK||BV|
|Greater Western Sydney||AFL||2014-2020||152||5||0.03||57%||16.82||4.07||6.21||2|
AFL: 11,455th player to appear, 47th most games played, 2,324th most goals kickedCollingwood: 1,054th player to appear, 63rd most games played, 206th most goals kickedGreater Western Sydney: 60th player to appear, 9th most games played, 59th most goals kicked
The son of former Magpie captain Ray Shaw, Heath Shaw was drafted under the father-son rule in the 2003 AFL Draft at pick 48. He his AFL debut in late 2005 and quickly established himself as a permanent member of the Collingwood side.
Shaw had a stunning 2006 season where he became quickly noted for his ball-winning ability out of the back-line and his consistency, attributes which would be the key to the future success of the Magpies. He polled six Brownlow Medal votes in that season and was placed fourth in the Copeland Trophy count. His prolific form continued in 2007 as the Magpies came within a kick of playing off for the premiership.
2008 proved to be similarly successful until Shaw was suspended by the club for the remainder of the season after round 18, after he admitted to lying to the club about his involvement in a car accident. He returned to the team in round 2, 2009 and was a vital component of the Collingwood "back six" thereafter, with the exception of an eight-week period in late 2011 when he was again suspended for an off-field betting indiscretion. Shaw was one of Collingwood's best in both the drawn and victorious 2010 Grand Finals against St Kilda.
While his form was consistent over the following seasons, Shaw's relationship with coach Nathan Buckley soured to the point that he was traded to GWS at the end of the 2013 season. She was unhappy with the move at the time but, over the next seven seasons, produced consistently good football in the backlines and become a vital part of his club's push up the ladder.
With increasing maturity, Shaw became very much an on-field leader, and a general in defence, often seen barking orders to teammates to ensure the Giants' defensive structures remained strong. While doing so, he continued to be a prolific ball-winner, setting up many a counterattack from his position in the backline. Shaw was a vital cog in the Giants side that came agonisingly close to a Grand Final in 2016 and, when the Giants did finally play in a premiership decider in 2019, was a rare shining star in a team that was thrashed by Richmond.
By the time the curtain was drawn on Shaw's AFL career at the end of 2020, he had added 152 games with the Giants to his 173 at Collingwood, taking his career total 325, putting him in the all-time V/AFL top 40.
Shaw's retirement brings to an end — for now at least — a famous family dynasty that, along with his father Ray, includes brother Rhyce, a Collingwood team-mate who later played for Sydney, and uncle Tony, who captained the Magpies' to their drought-breaking 1990 premiership win.
Author - Andrew Gigacz