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O'BRIEN, Craig

Years Played: 1989-91
Born: 3/03/1970
Height: 174 cm
Weight: 89 kg

Debut order: 953

Number(s): 45 , 12

Games: 21
Goals: 16

Previous Clubs: Rye

Year

Games

Goals

1989

2

1

1990

8

7

1991

11

8

Craig O'Brien played 21 games with Essendon and kicked 16 goals. He played mostly in the forward pocket where he was seen as a goal sneak. He was a very good mark for his size.

O'Brien struggled to get a regular game with Essendon and was drafted by the St Kilda after the 1991 season. He again found it hard to win a senior spot and spent his first year at St Kilda in the Reserves. He eventually cemented a place in their team and often played forward pocket next to Tony Lockett. After four seasons at St Kilda he was picked up by the Sydney Swans where he played out his career, pairing up again with his former St Kilda team-mate Lockett.

O'Brien was involved in a sensational incident while playing with the St Kilda Reserves. He had been reported and suspended for three matches and he tailed the reporting umpire in his car on the way home, making threatening gestures. He was duly suspended for an extra seven matches.

His father, Ron, played one game for Richmond in 1961.

 

O'BRIEN, Jack

Years Played: 1912-13
Born: 25/09/1887
Died: 8/03/1959
Height: 183 cm
Weight: 86 kg

Debut order: 227

Number(s): 25

Games: 14
Goals: 1

Previous Clubs: South Ballarat

Year

Games

Goals

1912

11

1

1913

4

0

Jack O'Brien was a follower and defender from South Ballarat. He was a good mark, a fair kick and was a real battler.

He had been rejected by South Melbourne early in 1912 so he didn't play his first game for Essendon until Round 11, 1912, but he only missed one more game for the year. Perhaps he was motivated by his earlier rejection, for he was one of Essendon's best players in the semi-final win over South Melbourne. He was also in the back pocket and ruck in the premiership team that year.

O'Brien played the first four games of 1913 before returning to South Ballarat.

He later played six games with Fitzroy in 1917 and 1918 before transferring to Northcote in 1919.

O'Brien died on 8th March, 1959.

 

 

O'BRIEN, Jack D.

Years Played: 1920
Born: 17/08/1898
Died: 30/05/1966
Height: 184 cm
Weight: 85 kg

Debut order: 315

Number(s): 7

Games: 14
Goals: 15

Previous Clubs: Footscray Juniors

Year

Games

Goals

1912

11

1

1913

4

0

Jack O'Brien was a fine centre half-forward who joined Essendon from Footscray Juniors. Prior to this, he had been wounded in Egypt during World War I.

He was a good mark and could kick with both feet and turn equally well on either side. He was Essendon's equal second top goalkicker in 1920.

O'Brien left Essendon without a clearance in 1921 to join Footscray (VFA), but when Footscray joined the League in 1925 he was barred by League rules from playing. He had played in the Footscray (VFA) premiership sides in 1923 and 1924.

He stood out of football for a year then joined Yarrawonga in 1926. He was then captain-coach of Kingsville in 1927.

O'Brien rejoined Footscray in 1928 and played five League games with that club. He then joined Coburg in early 1929 before becoming captain-coach of Williamstown.

He led the Railways in the Wednesday League for five years and was captain of the Victorian team in interstate Railways matches.

O'Brien was one of the few 'diggers' still playing senior football in the 1920s. He died on 30th May, 1966.

 

 

O'BRIEN, Jim

Years Played: 1905
Born:
Died: 24/02/1954
Height: cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 118

Number(s):

Games: 8
Goals: 0

Previous Clubs: Boroondara

Jim O'Brien came to Essendon from Boroondara.

He played the first seven games in 1905, missed Round 8, then played his last game in Round 9, 1905. He played in three wins and five losses.

O'Brien died on 24th February, 1954.

 

 

O'BRIEN, John

Years Played: 1932-34
Born: 24/01/1909
Died: 14/03/1985
Height: cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 443

Number(s): 6

Games: 22
Goals: 12

Previous Clubs: Essendon Juniors/Williamstown

"Jock" O'Brien was a clever wingman and rover who came to Essendon from Williamstown. His early football was with the Essendon Juniors.

He started well, winning Essendon's best first year player award in 1932. He was fiery even though he had a light frame, but his lack of height and strength told against him.

His brother, "Dally" O'Brien, was a captain and a Best and Fairest winner at North Melbourne (played 1938-1949).

"Jock" O'Brien died on 14th March, 1985.

 

O'BRIEN, Nick

Years Played: 2012-2013, 2015
Born: 26/06/1993
Height: 188 cm
Weight: 91 kg
Debut order: 1103

Number(s): 10
Games: 14
Goals: 4

Previous Clubs: North Ballarat Rebels

Seasons Played

Year

Games

Goals

2012

2

3

2013

3

1

2015

9

0

 

Nick O’Brien was recruited from North Ballarat Rebels at pick number 59 in the 2011 National Draft.

He had captained St Patrick’s College Ballarat to victory in the MCC Herald-Sun Shield and was seen as a mature young player with good leadership qualities.

O’Brien made his senior debuting in Round 22, 2012 against Richmond at MCG.

Originally playing as half forward, O’Brien was moulded into a running midfielder, however he found limited opportunities to break into the seniors’ midfield.

O’Brien was delisted at the end of 2015 and moved to Woodville-West Torrens in South Australia where he played in 2016 leading the club to the Grand Final that year and finishing runner-up in the Magarey Medal. After one season in Adelaide O’Brien returned to Essendon the following year to play with the club’s VFL side.

 

O'BRIEN, Paul

Years Played: 1988
Born: 16/04/1961
Height: 177 cm
Weight: 74 kg

Debut order: 941

Number(s): 36

Games: 3
Goals: 2

Previous Clubs: St Peter's/Melbourne

Paul O'Brien was orginally from St Peter's but came to Essendon after playing 22 games with Melbourne between 1980 and 1983.

He kicked his two goals in his first game for Essendon which was an away loss to Geelong in Round 5, 1988. His only other games for Essendon were in Rounds 11 and 12 for away losses to Hawthorn and Fitzroy.

 

 

O'CONNOR, Albert

Years Played: 1915-18
Born:
Died: 28/08/1944
Height: cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 267

Number(s): 10

Games: 13
Goals: 0

Previous Clubs: Melbourne District

Albert O'Connor played nine games in 1915, but his career, like that of so many others, was interrupted by World War I.

He missed two years of football when Essendon withdrew from the League in 1916 and 1917, but he returned in 1918 to play a further four games.

Albert O'Connor died on 28th August, 1944.

 

 

O'CONNOR, Leo

Years Played: 1910-11
Born: 11/04/1890
Died: 16/01/1985
Height: cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 208

Number(s):

Games: 10
Goals: 6

Previous Clubs: Carlton District

Year

Games

Goals

1910

5

3

1911

5

3

Leo O'Connor was a half-forward from Carlton District. He played 10 games in 1910 and early 1911 before being cleared to Wagga in New South Wales in mid 1911.

He was also a top Queensland cricketer, captaining that state, and is reported to have fostered the Australian Rules game in Brisbane.

Leo O'Connor died on 16th January, 1985, aged 93 years.

 

 

O'CONNOR, Ryan

Years Played: 1994-1998
Born: 27/06/1974
Height: 195 cm
Weight: 104 kg

Debut order: 985

Number(s): 41 , 3

Games: 67
Goals: 39

Previous Clubs: Ulverstone (Tas)

Year

Games

Goals

1994

4

2

1995

18

14

1996

11

11

1997

16

12

1998

14

8

Ryan O'Connor was drafted by Essendon at selection number 37 in the 1991 National Draft. He was originally from Ulverstone in Tasmania.

He was a powerful, often ungainly, ruckman and forward, but he made up for his lack of polish with enthusiasm and hard work.

O'Connor was a member of the 1992 VSFL premiership side and he then made his Essendon debut against Hawthorn at Waverley Park in 1994. He represented the Allies in State of Origin level in 1995 where he was awarded the Alex Jesaulenko Medal as the best Allies player.

O'Connor was involved in a serious car accident in 1997 and his form became patchy thereafter. He was traded to the Sydney Swans in 1999.

From there he moved to Port Adelaide in 2001 where he won the Magarey Medal as the SANFL's best player.

 

O'DONNELL, Gary

Years Played: 1987-1998
Born: 12/05/1965
Height: 181 cm
Weight: 87 kg

Debut order: 936

Number(s): 44 , 10

Games: 243
Goals: 88

Previous Clubs: North Ringwood

Year

Games

Goals

1987

1

0

1988

20

5

1989

25

3

1990

25

11

1991

22

5

1992

20

10

1993

24

14

1994

20

5

1995

24

16

1996

25

8

1997

20

8

1998

17

3

Gary O'Donnell served a long apprenticeship in the U19s and Reserves before making his senior debut in the last game of 1987. Bomber fans will agree it was worth the wait for O’Donnell became one of the most consistent and popular players over his 12 year career.  His next senior game was in Round 3, 1988, and from there O’Donnell  played 78 consecutive senior games before missing one in Round 10, 1991. He played a further 163 games in a remarkably consistent career.

O'Donnell's was one of the best on-ballers in the game and his creative play from around the packs and ability to nullify opponents earned him the nickname "Mr Reliable".  As an indication of his consistency O’Donnell finished top three in the club’s best and fairest in six consecutive seasons, winning the award in 1993 along with a premiership medal the same year. Many think he was best afield in the Grand final.

O\Donnell’s leadership over the years was rewarded with the captaincy in 1996 and 1997.

He was also given the honour of being named Essendon's Best and Fairest winner in 1993, a premiership year. He was runner-up in the Best and Fairest twice - in 1989 and 1990, and third in 1995.

He represented Victoria in 1990, 1991, 1992 and 1993.

He was delisted at the end of 1998 and he accepted a position as assistant coach in Brisbane in 1999. He was at Brisbane for six seasons and was part of the club during its three consecutive premierships in 2001, 2002 and 2003.

In late 2004 Gary O'Donnell returned to Windy Hill as an assistant coach to work with Kevin Sheedy and the other assistant coaches and former team-mates, Mark Harvey and Dean Wallis.

O'Donnell comes from a remarkable sporting family. His great grandfather, Teddy Rankin, played 180 games for Geelong (including Geelong's very first VFL game, which happened to be against Essendon). Teddy's brother, Tom, played 47 games for Geelong. Teddy's three sons, Cliff (153 games), Bert (132 games) and Doug (9 games) also played for Geelong. Gary's father, Graeme, played played 7 games for Geelong and 16 for North Melbourne. His sisters, Shelley and Wendy, were outstanding netballers, with Shelley playing for Australia.

Gary O'Donnell was named at number 31 in the Champions of Essendon (2002).

 

O'HALLORAN, Jack R.

Years Played: 1950-51
Born: 9/07/1939
Height: 175 cm
Weight: 71 kg

Debut order: 628

Number(s): 13

Games: 10
Goals: 3

Previous Clubs: Essendon YCW

Jack O'Halloran was a talented rover who came from Essendon YCW to the Seconds in 1947.

He won Essendon's Reserves Best and Fairest award in 1950, and was runner-up in the League's Gardiner Medal on a countback. He was also a member of the Seconds premiership side in that year.

O'Halloran had the misfortune of being at Essendon at a time when it had a particularly strong roving division, and he had difficulty in forcing his way into the team against champions such as Bill Hutchison, Greg Tate and Ron McEwin.

He played 10 games in 1950 and 1951 before transferring to North Melbourne where he played 75 games between 1952 and 1956. He won North Melbourne's Best and Fairest award in 1953 and was vice-captain in 1954.

O'Halloran then played 17 games with Footscray in 1957 and 1958 before transferring to Yarraville later in 1958. He only played one game there before spending the rest of the season with Springvale. He returned to Yarraville in 1959.

 

O'LOUGHLIN, Michael

Years Played: 1899
Born: 12/02/1876
Died: 6/05/1905
Height: cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 49

Number(s):

Games: 4
Goals: 0

Previous Clubs: Brunswick

Mick O'Loughlin was a follower from Brunswick. His only games for Essendon were in Rounds 2, 3, 4 and 5 in 1899, for three wins and one loss.

He then went to St Kilda where he played nine games in 1901 and 1902.

O'Loughlin's brother, Pat, was a star for Essendon.

Michael O'Loughlin died on 6th May, 1905, aged only 29.

 

O'LOUGHLIN, Pat

Years Played: 1897-1902
Born: 29/10/1873
Died: 14/08/1956
Height: cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 17

Number(s):

Games: 74
Goals: 18

Previous Clubs: Brunswick

Year

Games

Goals

1897

16

1

1898

16

8

1899

15

3

1900

10

2

1901

3

1

1902

14

3

Pat O'Loughlin was a fine follower and centre half-forward from Brunswick.

He was in Essendon's first League team and was one of the stars in the 1897 premiership success with his dashing play. He was very consistent and only missed four games between Round 1, 1897 and Round 10, 1900. He only played three games in 1901, but played 14 out of 20 in 1902, including the Grand Final loss to Carlton.

O'Loughlin represented the League in a match against Ballarat in 1899.

His brother, Mick, played five games for Essendon.

Pat O'Loughlin died on 14th August, 1956.

 

O'SHEA, Fred T.

Years Played: 1910-12
Born: 5/10/1886
Died: 26/12/1962
Height: 170 cm
Weight: 68 kg

Debut order: 440

Number(s): 12 , 15

Games: 51
Goals: 5

Previous Clubs: Brunswick

Year

Games

Goals

1910

17

1

1911

16

0

1912

16

2

Fred O'Shea came to Essendon from Brunswick where he played from 1907 to 1909, including in their 1909 premiership team.

O'Shea was quick and agile and one of the best wingmen in the League during his period at Essendon. He was a star on the wing in the 1911 premiership team but missed playing in the 1912 premiership team after he was injured in the semi final.

The 1912 final against Carlton was one of Essendon's most memorable wins. O'Shea had been carried off with a knee injury in the first few minutes of the game, but courageously came back on in the third quarter when further injuries had depleted the Essendon side. (There were no reserves at this time.) He was unable to walk, so he just stood in the goal square. When the game was in the balance, he marked a few yards out and kicked the goal that won the game before falling to the ground. It was his only kick for the game. Essendon went on to win the Grand Final.

This was his last game for Essendon and he later returned to play with Brunswick.

Fred O'Shea died on 26th December, 1962.

 

O'SHEA, Richard L.

Years Played: 1932
Born: 31/01/1909
Died: 21/10/1998
Height: 185 cm
Weight: 92 kg

Debut order: 199

Number(s): 27

Games: 7
Goals: 0

Previous Clubs: North Melbourne

Richard O'Shea was a tall follower and full-forward from North Melbourne where he played 14 games in 1930 and 1931.

He lacked pace and agility and only played seven games in late 1932. He was reported in Round 15 and missed the final three games through suspension.

O'Shea went on to play for North Melbourne Seconds in 1933, Camberwell in 1934 and then with Northcote from 1935 to 1937. He was a member of the Northcote premiership side in 1936. He finished his career in Fairfield from 1938 to 1940.

Richard O'Shea died on 21st October, 1998, aged 89.

 

 

O'SULLIVAN, Michael

Years Played: 1988
Born: 5/04/1962
Height: 182 cm
Weight: 73 kg

Debut order: 944

Number(s): 40

Games: 1
Goals: 0

Previous Clubs: Assumption College/Seymour/Melbourne

Year

Games

Goals

1988

1

0

Michael O'Sullivan was recruited from Melbourne where he had played 53 games as a talented left-footed wingman. He was originally from Seymour.

His time at Essendon was ruined by injury and his only game, in Round 19, 1988, was a forgettable 67 point loss to Geelong at Windy Hill.

O'Sullivan returned to Seymour as coach.

 

 

O'SULLIVAN, Peter

Years Played: 1952-55
Born: 22/05/1932
Died: 23/09/1972
Height: 180 cm
Weight: 75 kg

Debut order: 647

Number(s): 16

Games: 47
Goals: 1

Previous Clubs: Ascot Youth Centre

Year

Games

Goals

1952

12

0

1953

19

1

1954

7

0

1955

9

0

Peter O'Sullivan was a classy wingman and half-forward flanker from the Ascot Youth Centre. He had won the award for Best and Fairest in the Essendon District League under-age competition in 1949.

He was a regular member of Essendon's fine centre line of the time, alongside players such as Jack Clarke, Reg Burgess and Greg Sewell. He debuted in Round 8, 1952, and played 22 successive games before missing Round 4 in 1954. His selection became less consistent after that, and he only played another 12 games in 1954 and 1955. His final game was in the 1955 first semi-final which Essendon lost to Geelong.

O'Sullivan joined North Melbourne where he played 25 games from 1956 to 1958. He then joined Brunswick in 1959.

He was killed in a car accident on 23rd September, 1972, aged only 40.

 

OAKLEY, Joe

Years Played: 1934
Born: 28/01/1914
Died: 8/12/1980
Height: 157 cm
Weight: 80 kg

Debut order: 472

Number(s): 15

Games: 2
Goals: 2

Previous Clubs: Sunbury

Year

Games

Goals

1934

2

2

Joseph Cornelius Oakley came to Essendon from Sunbury as a half-forward and rover.

Oakley was nicknamed ‘Whippy’ and while short for a league player was strongly built weighing 80 kgs.

His only games for Essendon were in Rounds 4 and 5 in 1934, for a win against Hawthorn and a loss to Richmond. He kicked a goal in both his appearances.

 

OFFICER, Augustus P.

Years Played: 1897-1900
Born: 15/09/1875
Died: 25/02/1935
Height: 173 cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 15

Number(s):

Games: 48
Goals: 12

Previous Clubs: Warrnambool

Augustus Officer was a strong half-forward and defender from Warrnambool who played in Essendon's inaugural League game in 1897. Although not the star his brother Ned was, Gus managed 48 games over four season and missed only one game in his last two seasons: 1899 and 1900.

Aged 40, he paid his own way overseas to enlist in the British Army in the Royal Field Artillery, and received a Military Cross for gallantry while fighting in France in 1918. He was twice mentioned in despatches.

His brother Ned, played many Association games for Essendon and 18 League games in 1897 and 1898.

Augustus Officer died on 25th February, 1935.

 

 

OFFICER, Ned A.

Years Played: 1897-98
Born: 29/03/1869
Died: 10/06/1927
Height: cm
Weight: kg

Debut order: 16

Number(s):

Games: 18
Goals: 0

Previous Clubs: Warrnambool/Geelong College

Year

Games

Goals

1897

14

0

1898

4

0

Ned Officer was one of the great full-backs of his era. He was at the twilight of his career when Essendon joined the League in 1897, but he had played a major role in the great Essendon Association premiership teams between 1891 and 1894. He also represented Victoria in the intercolonial game against South Australia in 1892.

He came to Essendon from Geelong College and prior to that Warrnambool, and was the new style of full-back. He was not only a magnificent long kick, with either drop, place or punt, but a big, fast, rugged man, a splendid high-mark and clever on the ground.

His brother, Gus, played 48 games for Essendon between 1897 and 1900.

Ned Officer was a doctor and his career took him to Perth, where he died on 10th June, 1927.

 

OGDEN, Percy

Years Played: 1910-15, 1918-21
Born: 24/02/1886
Died: 13/07/1967
Height: 170 cm
Weight: 70 kg

Debut order: 198

Number(s): 11 , 16

Games: 161
Goals: 91

Previous Clubs: Collingwood/Essendon (VFA)/Preston

Year

Games

Goals

1910

19

9

1911

20

14

1912

17

11

1913

17

7

1914

17

7

1915

16

7

1918

13

4

1919

15

12

1920

14

15

1921

13

5

Percy Ogden, known as "Butch", was one of Essendon's greatest ever rovers. He was cool and resourceful, with a rare combination of pace and endurance. He was also a prodigious kick with a fine goal sense.

He came from Preston where he played from 1906 to 1909 and before that he had played fouir games with Collingwood in 1905.

Ogden was a star in both the 1911 and 1912 premiership teams as a rover. He represented Victoria in 1912, 1913 and 1914. In an era of low scores, he kicked four goals in a match twice in 1910 and 1911.

He returned to Preston when Essendon withdrew from the League between 1916 and 1917, but returned as good as ever in 1918. He was named as the best rover in the League by 'The Herald' in 1920. He represented Victoria in 1919, 1920 and 1921, and captained the State team against South Australia in 1920. Only five Essendon players have played more interstate games.

Ogden was vice-captain in 1918 and captained the Club in 1919. He became captain-coach in 1920 and 1921. When he took over as coach he had a big task to improve the Club's performance and he led Essendon in their last game at the East Melbourne ground in 1921.

When he finally left Essendon he became captain-coach of Northcote in 1922. After this, he again went back to Preston from 1923 to 1925 and he was captain-coach in 1924 and 1925.

Ogden's son, Gordon, played 134 games for Melbourne between 1928 and 1937, represented Victoria five times and later captain coached Williamstown to a premiership in 1939. His other son, Terry, played three games for Melbourne in 1932 and 15 for Carlton in 1934. He died in 1934 of blood poisoning which resulted from an injury sustained while playing for Carlton.

He was named at number 38 in the Champions of Essendon (2002).

Percy Ogden died on 13th July, 1967.

 

OKEY, Howard

Years Played: 1928-34
Born: 12/02/1906
Died: 3/03/1985
Height: 177 cm
Weight: 69 kg

Debut order: 397

Number(s): 2

Games: 109
Goals: 52

Previous Clubs: West Melbourne Juniors

Year

Games

Goals

1928

14

8

1929

18

18

1930

17

2

1931

15

5

1932

18

6

1933

15

9

1934

12

4

Howard Okey was a fine, long striding, half-forward and then centreman.

He came to Essendon's Seconds from West Melbourne Juniors in 1925. Although only slightly-built, he was fast, clever and very reliable. He had wonderful anticipation, could take a fine mark, and was a beautiful long drop-kick to position.

Okey won Essendon's Best and Fairest award in 1929. He also scored the most Brownlow votes at Essendon in 1931 and 1932 and won the most serviceable player award in 1932.

Okey became a field umpire after retiring from playing.

He was one of Essendon's most loyal servants and served on the committee for twenty-seven years from 1944 to 1970. He was Chairman of selectors for fifteen years and became a Life Member of the Victorian Football League in 1970.

Howard Okey died on 3rd March, 1985.

 

 

OLARENSHAW, Rick

Years Played: 1993-1998
Born: 1/02/1973
Height: 182 cm
Weight: 80 kg

Debut order: 978

Number(s): 47

Games: 77
Goals: 14

Previous Clubs: Keilor

Ricky Olarenshaw was one of the rising stars at Essendon in the 1993 premiership year. A local boy, he started well at Essendon winning the U19s Best and Fairest in 1991. He became the regular wingman for Essendon, a logical choice given his pace, excellent ball skills and evasive ability.

He was the link between the back line and the forward line, helping to set up many attacking plays. In the 1993 Grand Final he was the best player on the ground in the first quarter, really setting up the Essendon win.

Olarenshaw's career was affected by a serious rib injury in 1995 and continuing problems with his back. He was one of the most popular players at Essendon, and towards the end of 1996 he was again gaining regular selection in the senior team.

Olarenshaw transferred to Collingwood in 1999 where he played five games. He retired in 2001 after one game with Kangaroos. 

 

OTWAY, Wayne

Years Played: 1982-83
Born: 24/06/1956
Height: 168 cm
Weight: 71 kg

Debut order: 889

Number(s): 15

Games: 36
Goals: 65

Previous Clubs: East Perth (WA)

Year

Games

Goals

1982

22

46

1983

14

19

Wayne Otway was a quick and elusive rover, who came to Essendon from East Perth where he played 110 games from 1976 to 1981. He was in that club's premiership team in 1978.

He made his presence felt in his two seasons with Essendon, though troubled by a leg injury, and was second top goalkicker in 1982. He was also equal third top Brownlow medal vote scorer at Essendon in the same year. He was a member of the team which lost the Preliminary Final to North Melbourne in 1982.

Otway returned to East Perth in 1984.