Today we lost a great Australian.
Graham ‘Polly’ Farmer changed the game of Australian Rules Football.
On the field, Graham revolutionised the role of the Ruckman, and brought a grace to the game that had rarely been seen before or since.
He was the exception to the rule ‘never pass to a ruckman’, and his innovative attacking football through handball and skills at ground level remain highly sought after talents in today’s modern game.
Throughout his career with East Perth and West Perth in the WAFL, and Geelong in the VFL, Graham’s record challenges the best even to this day.
Six premierships, 10 club best and fairest awards and an All Australian in 1956, 1958 and 1961.
An AFL Hall of Famer, he was also recognised in the AFL Team of the Century and named Captain of the Indigenous Team of the Century.
He is perhaps the greatest tall man, or any man, to have played the game.
Beyond the field, Graham was a proud Noongar man and a leader for Australia’s Indigenous community.
He inspired generations of players who followed in his footsteps, and undoubtedly will continue to inspire many more who are yet to strap on their boots.
My thoughts are with his family, friends and the wider football community at this time.