Maurice Rioli

Date of Birth: 01/09/1957
Height: 175 cm ( 5-9 )
Weight: 76 kg ( 12-0 )
Guernsey: 17
Debut: 20/03/1982, Round 2, Fitzroy
Last Game: 28/08/1987, Round 22, Brisbane Bears

Seasons: 1982-87
Total Games: 118
Total Goals: 80

Honours: Best & Fairest 1982-83, Norm Smith Medal 1982 Grand Final, West Australian Representative Team Captain ( vs Victoria ) 1987, All-Australian Team 1983, 1986.

Total Games:
Total Goals:


Maurice was a centreman. He was one of the most gifted players ever to wear the Richmond jumper. He originally learnt to play football at Garden Point Orphanage for Aboriginal Children, on Melville Island. From there, he moved to St.Mary’s, in the Darwin League, where his good form attracted the attention of South Fremantle. He spent six seasons with South Fremantle before transferring to Richmond. He represented Western Australia on 13 occasions, captaining the side in 1987, and was selected in the 1983, 1986 and 1988 All-Australian sides. He also ran fourth in the 1979 “Sandover Medal” count.
He was a very elusive player with amazing balance in the way he could weave through a pack and then deliver the ball with pinpoint accuracy. His ability to spin out of trouble and then get a handball or kick away was almost magic. Although not a fast player, he had lightning fast reflexes and the ability to read the play well. He was rarely caught out of position such was his football sense. He played for Richmond between 1982 and 1987, winning the club Best & Fairest award in his first two seasons, 1982 and 1983. He was a member of the 1982 Grand Final side and went on to win the “Norm Smith Medal” for the best player on the ground in that match. He ran second in the 1983 “Brownlow Medal” count and the 1985 Richmond Best and Fairest award. He also represented Australia in Gaelic Football.
Away from football he was the West Australian amateur light middleweight and welterweight boxing champion during the 1970s. Several of his brothers played senior football in Western Australia, with one playing in the Hawthorn Seconds in 1991. Maurice returned to South Fremantle after leaving Richmond, before returning to Darwin. Whilst playing with Richmond he worked in the local Aboriginal Community and later entered politics, becoming the Labor Member for Arafura. He also returned to the M.C.G on Grand Final day 1993 to present the “Norm Smith Medal” as part of the celebrations for the year of the world’s indigenous people. Ironically, the winner of the award was a fellow Aboriginal, and family friend, Essendon’s Michael Long.

Imalu Melville Island ; St Mary's Darwin 1975-76, Games 16 ; South Fremantle 1976-81 ( Honours - Premiership 1980 ).

South Fremantle 1988-90, Games 166 including 1976-81, Goals 126 including 1976-81 ( Honours - West Australian Representative Team Games 13 including 1976-81, West Australian Captain 1988-89 , All-Australian Team 1988 ) ; Waratahs 1989-93 ( Honours - Captain/Coach 1989-91, Coach 1991-93 ).

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