David Dench

David Dench (born (1951-08-23) 23 August 1951)[2] is a former Australian rules footballer in the (then) Victorian Football League. He played his whole career with North Melbourne Football Club at one of its most successful periods.

David Dench
Personal information
Full name David Dench
Date of birth (1951-08-23) 23 August 1951
Original team(s) West Coburg (EDFL)[1]
Height 191 cm (6 ft 3 in)
Weight 89 kg (196 lb)
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
1969–1984 North Melbourne 275 (29)[1]
Representative team honours
Years Team Games (Goals)
Victoria 4 (0)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 1984.
Career highlights
Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com

VFL career

Dench played full-back. He was recruited from the West Coburg. Dench won the North Melbourne club's best and fairest award, the Syd Barker Medal, on four occasions - 1971, 1976, 1977, 1981.[1] In 1972 David Dench at the age of 21 he became one of the youngest captains appointed in the Kangaroo's history. He also captained the 1977 premiership team, due to Keith Greig's absence because of an injury. In the 1977 VFL Grand Final, Ron Barassi moved him to the forward line, where he sparked North Melbourne Football Club's revival by contributing to the forward line and kicking goals, to draw with Collingwood Football Club.

In 1984 Dench was told by his coach Barry Cable he playing days were numbered and was going to play out the season in the reserves. Dench was not happy with this so he grabbed his and went home and retired. His relationship with Cable has been fractured ever since Dench said he’ll never speak to Cable again. When John (Kanga) Kennedy was appointed coach he tried to convince Dench to play again but the knees were no good and he stayed as an assistant coach.

Post AFL career and personal life

In 2000 Dench was inducted into the Australian Football Hall of Fame.[2]

His daughter, Michelle is a distinguished Australian sportswoman. She played high level basketball before taking up Australian football playing over 100 games for her club Melbourne University. She also represented Victoria and Australia as well as captaining her club to a premiership.

In 2008, Dench served 4 months in jail for his minor role in a scheme to defraud Victoria University out of millions of dollars.[3]


  1. "David Dench". Past Players. North Melbourne Football Club. Archived from the original on 30 December 2012. Retrieved 15 December 2010.
  2. "AFL Hall of Fame Players". Australian Football League. Retrieved 15 December 2010.
  3. Rout, Milanda (9 July 2008). "David Dench jailed for role in fraud". The Australian. Retrieved 15 December 2010.

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