Australian Football Celebrating the history of the great Australian game


Key Facts

Full name
Bruce R. Abernethy

Known as
Bruce Abernethy


10 May 1962 (age 61)

Place of birth
Ouse, TAS (7140)

Age at first & last AFL game
First game: 19y 321d
Last game: 30y 91d

Height and weight
Height: 185 cm
Weight: 86 kg

Senior clubs
Port Adelaide; North Melbourne; Collingwood; Australia; Adelaide

Jumper numbers
North Melbourne: 12
Collingwood: 5
Adelaide: 5

Recruited from
North Melbourne (1984); Collingwood (1991)

State of origin

Hall of fame
South Australian Football Hall Of Fame (2007)

Bruce Abernethy

ClubLeagueCareer spanGamesGoalsAvgWin %AKIAHBAMKBV
Port AdelaideSANFL1979-1981, 1987-19921901150.61
North MelbourneV/AFL1982-198343210.4963%15.164.813.606
SANFL1979-1981, 1987-19921901150.61
V/AFL1982-1986, 1991-1992112390.3559%

AFL: 9,303rd player to appear, 2,095th most games played, 2,474th most goals kickedNorth Melbourne: 729th player to appear, 307th most games played, 247th most goals kickedCollingwood: 846th player to appear, 316th most games played, 361st most goals kickedAdelaide: 24th player to appear, 203rd most games played, 188th most goals kicked

The Collingwood connection was prominent at Football Park yesterday when Port Adelaide crushed a tired-looking Central District by 85 points in the SANFL qualifying final. Port coach John Cahill, a former Collingwood coach, masterminded the victory by shifting talented former Collingwood follower Bruce Abernethy on to damaging Central follower Greg Smith after halftime, which sparked nine goals.¹

Bruce Abernethy (shown right) was a highly poised and polished performer who enjoyed a fourteen season, 300-plus game career with four clubs. Born in the Tasmanian town of Ouse, on 10th May 1962, he began with Port Adelaide in 1979, and played in a premiership team in each of his first three seasons before crossing to North Melbourne in 1982. He spent two seasons with North, and then three at Collingwood, impressing during this time as a classy attacking wingman or half back who had great pace and considerable skill.

In 1987 he returned to Port Adelaide where he promptly won the best and fairest award followed by the Jack Oatey Medal after the Magpies’ grand final defeat of Glenelg in 1988. He also played in Port’s 1989, 1990 and 1992 premiership-winning teams. In 1991 he was a member of Adelaide’s inaugural AFL squad, playing 11 games to add to his 190 for Port, 43 with North, 58 for Collingwood, and 10 interstate appearances for South Australia.

Author - John Devaney


1. “The Canberra Times”, 17/9/89, page 15.


Full Points Footy's SA Football Companion, Full Points Footy's Tasmanian Football Companion, Crème de la Crème


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