'It's done': AFL icon's 41-year marriage dramatically ended

Andrew Reid
·4-min read
Seen here, AFL icon Robert ‘Dipper’ DiPierdomenico smiles for a photo.
Robert ‘Dipper’ DiPierdomenico's 41-year marriage to wife Cheryl appears to be over. Pic: Getty

AFL great Robert “Dipper” DiPierdomenico's 41-year marriage appears to be over after a social media post from his wife, Cheryl.

The couple separated last year but decided to give it another shot after spending 45 years of their life together.

Cheryl and 'Dipper' have two kids together, Dylan and Candice but the Hawthorn great's wife says she's been left "devastated and broken" by their latest breakdown.

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News Corp reported that DiPierdomenico was allegedly caught sending an ex-girlfriend flowers and champagne on Valentine’s Day, which his wife found out about when the woman posted a photo of them on Instagram.

The same report says 'Dipper' claims to have sent the gifts because the woman had recently lost a loved one.

Entertainment reporter Peter Ford appeared to substantiate the allegations against DiPierdomenico when asked about the Valentine's Day account by a social media user.

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“Was it Dipper that sent roses to his mistress on Valentine's Day and she posted a pic of these roses on her Instagram account and Dippers (sic) wife found out?” the social media user asked Ford.

“Correct,” Ford swiftly replied.

DiPierdomenico's wife did not go into detail about the alleged incident but did say that “up until Valentine’s Day I was the happiest girl in the world".

In an emotional Facebook post on Sunday, Cheryl indicated that her marriage to the 62-year-old AFL great was officially over.

Pictured left, Robert DiPierdomenico with his wife Cheryl on the right.
Robert DiPierdomenico is seen here with his wife Cheryl on the right. Pic: Facebook

“This is a really hard post! Some of my friends say go for it, others say don’t say a word! I have to go with my gut! So I am!" she wrote.

"I have loved this man for over 45 years! He came back to me in Sept wanting a second chance! I gave it to him because I thought, maybe it was my fault we fell apart!

“Up until Valentine’s Day I was the happiest girl in the world having my family back as a whole! My world crumbled! Back to square one!!!!! Why why why! I’m devastated and broken but now I know it’s done!!!”

DiPierdomenico played 240 games for Hawthorn in a 17-year career that saw him win five VFL premierships and the Brownlow Medal in 1986.

He was also inducted into the Australian Football Hall of Fame in 2007 and recently appeared on the reality TV show "I'm a Celebrity... Get Me out of Here!".

AFL rocked by numerous marriage breakdowns

DiPierdomenico's marriage breakdown is the latest to rock the AFL, with Collingwood coach Nathan Buckley and Richmond counterpart Damien Hardwick both separating from their wives in 2020.

Hardwick has just been spotted with new girlfriend Alexandra Crow for the first time since his split with wife Danielle.

The three-time premiership coach left his wife last year and is now in a relationship with Crow - a member of the club's commercial sales team.

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On Sunday, Hardwick and Crow were spotted out in public together for the first time as they walked their dog in Melbourne.

Hardwick and Crow appeared happy and relaxed as they went for a stroll with their dog, Hank, in Elwood.

Earlier this month, Hardwick revealed he addressed the Tigers' playing group about his marriage breakdown immediately on his return to the club after an extended off-season break.

Estranged wife Danielle is close to a number of partners of Tigers players, so speculation swirled about how Hardwick's personal situation could impact the club's tilt at a third-straight premiership.

Damien Hardwick with wife Danielle at the 2017 Brownlow Medal. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)
Damien Hardwick with wife Danielle at the 2017 Brownlow Medal. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

"It's important that the first time they (the players) saw me that I spoke about it openly and honestly," Hardwick told SEN.

"Until I did that, we couldn't really move forward.

"That was something we do at the club; it's important we did so we could get on with the business of preparing for round one.

"We always speak about things that are distractions in our lives and distractions that may bring about the demise of great teams.

"That's the reality of the competition, sides will continually deal with those distractions. My players are understanding of the situation and where we're at."

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