Bob Murphy has named the player that used to give him the hardest time whenever they met.
The former Western Bulldogs captain admits trying to tame spring-heeled Melbourne forward Russell Robertson was one of the trickiest tasks of his 312-game career.
Murphy recalled a particular moment early in his career when Robertson simply had him on toast.
“I played against Russell Robertson a lot of times, for a long period of time,” he said on SEN’s Bob and Andy.
“We were probably even over the long journey but there was a day very early on in my career at the MCG, and it started badly because Luke Darcy was fired up before the game and said, ‘No one is shaking hands before the game. If you want to catch up with them, catch up with them after the game’.
“So it was all on edge and I knew I was playing on Robbo and he knew he was playing on me. Robbo is a very affectionate guy and not only did he go in for the handshake, he went in for the ‘bro’ shake and the hug. This is pre-game. I had to roll out of it.
“That day he really touched me up. He was good on the air, he was good on the lead, he kicked a few goals.
“He took a hang on Matty Croft but I was sort of chasing. As I was chasing him in, and just as he went to launch, he kicked his foot back like a mule straight into my plumbs.
“There is a photo in the paper, Robbo is there hanging, taking mark of the week and I’m behind him there with the hands clutching the beanbag, a real grimace on the face.
“That was a day when Russell Robertson gave me a bath.”
Robertson appeared as a guest on the first edition of the ‘Splish Splash’ segment to talk about the opponent who would often give him a bath.
“We played a lot of games against Collingwood because we always had the Queen’s Birthday locked in,” Robbo said.
“I hated playing them because there was a bloke who not a lot of people probably remember. He wasn’t a big name he wasn’t a fancy player, he didn’t catch the eye a lot.
“But he got two Copelands from the half-back flank and that’s James Clement.
“Very miserly. The thing about James was he was a very intelligent guy. He knew the ins and outs of football and was very quick and very strong.
“With him there was no chinks in the armour and I knew I had to be on my best just get get a touch.
“There were about four years in a row on Queen’s Birthday where I didn’t get a touch and I’m sitting in the change rooms saying, ‘I’m actually s–t!’.”