Dipper DiPierdomenico

  • Dipper DiPierdomenico Speaker

    Beginning his career with the Hawthorn Football Club in 1975, Robert ‘Dipper’ DiPierdomenico, started slowly making some 99 reserve grade games as he flitted between first team and reserve grade footballBeginning his career with the Hawthorn Football Club in 1975, DiPierdomenico, started slowly making some 99 reserve grade games as he flitted between first team and reserve grade football. He kick-started his career in…

    Location: VIC, Australia
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About Dipper

Beginning his career with the Hawthorn Football Club in 1975, Robert ‘Dipper’ DiPierdomenico, started slowly making some 99 reserve grade games as he flitted between first team and reserve grade footballBeginning his career with the Hawthorn Football Club in 1975, DiPierdomenico, started slowly making some 99 reserve grade games as he flitted between first team and reserve grade football. He kick-started his career in 1978, culminating in a best-on-ground performance in the 1978 VFL Grand Final. He went on to play 240 games and kick 130 goals with the Hawks, retiring in 1991, including 5 day and 5 night premierships with one of the most successful eras of domination a club has ever seen.

He was known for his toughness (which led to many trips to the Tribunal), and the moustachioed Dipper was one of the much-loved, and most media-covered characters in the VFL during the 1980s. DiPierdomenico somehow managed to avoid the Tribunal in 1986 to win the Brownlow Medal, tying with Greg Williams, who was playing for Sydney at the time. Later in the week, he would win his third Premiership medallion as the Hawks defeated Carlton by 42 points.

Late in the first quarter of the 1989 VFL Grand Final, DiPierdomenico was running backwards to take a mark when he was met solidly from behind by Geelong star Gary Ablett. The force of the collision broke several of DiPierdomenico’s ribs and punctured one of his lungs. Despite the pain and unaware of the extent of the damage, DiPierdomenico continued to play until the final siren. Typically, he featured among Hawthorn’s best players and also got reported. He collapsed shortly after the game and was rushed to the casualty ward of St. Vincent’s Hospital, where doctors found out that DiPierdomenico had punctured a lung. He recounted the gravity of the situation years later:

“By this time I’d been shifted into intensive care. The doctor came in and said if they didn’t gag me I was gone… So there you are. I had eight days in hospital to think about what might have happened. To tell you the truth, it scared me.”

In later life, the legend would continue. Dipper developed into a national media personality via his work on Channel 7. He was well known for his role as ‘Boundary Rider’ for the network and his role as a panel member of The Sunday Footy Panel with Rex Hunt. Dipper’s ‘Boundary Rider’ tradition continued with leading Melbourne radio station 3AW as he entertained listeners each weekend for many seasons. Post Channel 7, Dipper has also enjoyed television appearances including Channel 10’s ‘Before The Game,’ Fox Footy’s Auskick’n Around, Channel 9’s Postcards, Channel 9’s Mornings with Kerri-Ann and The Today Show.

Dipper is now heavily involved with the AFL as the National Ambassador for their junior development program, Auskick. Dipper’s role includes educating Australia’s youth about Australian Rules Football and it takes him to every corner of our Nation. He is also one of NAB’s National Ambassadors and is involved in a variety of activities to promote the brand and their involvement In Australian Rules Football.

Dipper is an in demand after dinner speaker who’s hilarious anecdotes makes any function he’s booked for a ‘must attend’ event.

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