Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
Ian J. Marsh

Known as
Ian Marsh

23 October 1955

28 May 2021 (aged 65)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 20y 179d
Last game: 24y 305d

Height and weight
Height: 178 cm
Weight: 75 kg

Senior clubs

Jumper numbers
Essendon: 37

Ian Marsh

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV

AFL: 8,815th player to appear, 3,415th most games played, 4,111th most goals kickedEssendon: 833rd player to appear, 274th most games played, 357th most goals kicked

Boasting great pace, skill and balance, all laced with a touch of venom, Ian Marsh was a wingman par excellence whose career in top level football was cruelly curtailed by illness.

He commenced his senior football with NTFA side North Launceston where he played roughly 50 games between 1973 and 1975, highlighted by winning a competition best and fairest win in his last season. The 1976 season saw him at Essendon where, after a slow start, he developed into a key player, in the process earning a reputation as one of the most eye-catching footballers in the game.

By the end of the 1980 season Marsh had played 68 VFL games and booted 16 goals as well as representing Tasmania in both the 1979 and 1980 state of origin carnivals. Prior to the start of the 1981 season, however, he became unwell and was diagnosed with a serious heart condition, which eventually necessitated open heart surgery. He did make an attempt to re-ignite his career but managed only a handful of reserves games before retiring from top level football. Between late 1981 and 1984 he played for Essendon League side Aberfeldie before commencing the 1985 season with South Bendigo. However, a recurrence of his heart problems brought the final curtain down on his career.

Author - John Devaney


Encyclopedia of AFL Footballers by Russell Holmesby & Jim Main; Wikipedia article; Those Magnificent Men 1897-1987 by Michael Maplestone


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