DOB: 9 July 1977
Picked up after playing in the Fitzroy Reserves, Ward was promoted from the rookie list when Brett Lovett retired. He played four games in 1998 and was voted Most Improved Player, but suffered a broken arm and missed Melbourne's finals campaign.
1999 was a breakout season for Ward, and he established himself in the senior side. 2000, though, was nearly a write off as he missed six weeks at the start of the season with a wrist injury and then five weeks with a torn hamstring. He didn't play his first game of the season until round 18 when he replaced the injured Matthew Whelan, but retained his spot all the way through to the losing Grand Final.
In 2001 Ward was finally freed from his injury issues and played all 22 games for the season, finishing fifth in the Best and Fairest. The next year he played 16 games in a much improved side and earned maximum Brownlow votes for his career high four goal performance against Brisbane in Melbourne's round 14 comeback victory at the Gabba.
Ward added another 20 games in 2003 but the side were a shadow of the team which had turned out the year before, and in July it was revealed that he was heavily in debt to a bookmaker. In 2007 he was forced to own up to a substantial gambling problem and was fined $10,000 after admitting to betting on AFL matches.
Ward saw his 2005 season destroyed by a shoulder injury during the pre-season, and he didn't play until late in the season. He returned to play for Sandringham and was best on ground in their winning Grand Final side. 2006 and 2007 saw him a regular in the side again, and he played 17 and 18 games respectively before being delisted at the end of 2007. He then joined North Adelaide.
In 2011 Ward revealed that he had been forced to seek treatment for gambling addiction. That year he captain/coached Lalbert Football Club, who became the Mallee Eagles in 2012 during his second year with the club. Joined Monbulk in 2013, was playing coach for the last three years and remained there until retiring at the end of 2016.
|Round 21, 1999||Melee||$1000 fine|
|Grand Final 2000||Melee||$3500 fine|
|Round 3, 2001||Abusive Language||Withdrawn|
|Round 1, 2004||Unduly Rough Play||3 matches|
|Round 16, 2006||Melee||$1500 fine|