George Smeaton

Date of Birth: 27/05/1917
Height: 183 cm ( 6-0 )
Weight: 86 kg ( 13-7 )
Guernsey: 24
Debut: 13/07/1935, Round 12, Footscray
Last Game: 31/08/1946, Round 19, Essendon

Seasons: 1935-42, 1944-46
Total Games: 149
Total Goals: 36

Honours: Victorian Representative Team 1941 Games 1.

Seasons: 1933-35, 1943, 1945
Total Games: 36
Total Goals:

George was a tough-as-nails defender who usually played at full-back or centre-half-forward. He was a versatile player and at various times during his career he played in the centre and at centre-half-forward. Whilst played as a forward his highest individual goal tally was 3, which he kicked on two occasions.

He was a strong mark and fearless competitor when the ball hit the ground. He also had the grit to play with injuries, including one Final's game at full-back with a broken toe on his kicking foot, which didnt stop him kicking off. He was nicknamed "The Brown Bomber" and he was awarded Life Membership in 1944.

For this 1936 season, Haydn Bunton listed Smeaton as one of the League's most improved players. ''Young to take over the vital centre position, Smeaton has done remarkably well against the leading pivots of the League"

He was a member of the 1940, 1942 and 1944 Grand Final sides, unfortunately missing the 1943 Premiership due to war service. He was voted Richmond's best player in the 1944 Grand Final and represented Victoria in 1941.
After leaving Richmond he coached Tasmanian club Latrobe for one year, before coaching Oakleigh between 1948 and 1954. Whilst at Oakleigh he led them to two Premierships and two runners-up, as well as coaching the VFA Representative side. He was great communicator and it was his ability to get through to individual players or the team as a whole that saw him bond Oakleigh into a very formidable e team. A strong disciplinarian, he set very professional standards for his players. He also played Senior XI District Cricket with Richmond between 1936 and 1940 as a fast bowler and wicket keeper. He batted 32 times, scoring 293 runs with a highest score of 48 and also took 40 wickets with his best figures being 6 for 60 against Essendon in 1938/1939. He finished that same match with 10 wickets. He served in the Navy between 1942 and 1945 where he saw active service as a commando. During his war service he also played first grade rugby in Sydney. George was a wharf labourer and postman and died in 1978.

Brighton Street School Team 1930-32.

Latrobe Captain/Coach 1947 ; Oakleigh 1948-54, Games 38, Goals 67 ( Honours - Premiership 1950, 1952, Captain/Coach 1948-51, Coach 1951-54, VFA Representative Team Coach 1953.