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There have been days where I didn’t want to come in and do the same boring, mundane stuff. But it’s your job and you need to get on with it and do it.


I try to stay positive. I’ve been so lucky to have the career I’ve had. There are a lot worse off people out there.


When you are in a team but you can’t play, you feel like you’re a bit of a spare dick.


You can help out and encourage the boys and give them advice, but it’s really frustrating because you can’t get on the field and help them that way. That’s been the toughest bit, especially with a pretty young group.


The whole way through I’ve felt that I was close but just not close enough. I’d be two or three weeks away from playing again and something else would break down.


The team we’ve got at the moment, I’ve hardly played any footy with. Times have changed pretty quickly.


I feel my best form of leadership is my actions out on the ground. The other guys have probably forgotten how I played.


They’re not alone. I went back recently and watched a game I played in, because I’d forgotten how I’ve gone about it a little bit.


I’m looking forward to getting out there with those guys, building some synergy, giving some advice and getting my way.


This time, I think I’m there, it feels great.





The club encourages you to go and watch the games when you are on the injury list. Last year I went to every game in Melbourne and sat up in the box and tried to help where I could. This year I’ve been up in the stands watching it. I get a little bit into it, on edge. It’s hard for me to sit still and watch the game.


I think I’ll stay in footy in some capacity when I finish. I definitely couldn’t be a senior coach. It’s a bit full-on, a bit too much for me and wouldn’t suit me. Maybe being a development-type of coach might suit me better. I’m a pretty calm sort of guy, I like a good time with the guys, I get on with my business, no fuss.


Footy is all I know, so I’ll be in it in some way.


I won four flags with Hawthorn and it’s the best feeling in the world when you know you’re the best team. You’ve got trust in each other and you just go out there each weekend and get the job done.


We were lucky to have great experienced players and amazing leaders. It was our advantage over other teams. Our leaders, and we had a heap of them, gave us the ability to handle situations when it mattered most.


My body was great. I was playing my best footy through those premiership years, everything was rosy. We were focused and driven and wanted to achieve success, we were all on the same page and got the job done.


We’re just trying to find out what our best mix is at the moment. We’ve been a bit unlucky in some areas. We’ve been unlucky with injuries, we’ve lost some close games where we’ve lost a couple of players in the same line which doesn’t help.


It’s an unusual period for us, and if we get through we’ll be okay. We’ve just got to find the best mix.




In the back of my mind, I’ve had thoughts about next season. But my focus has been about getting back out there first.


I’ll go out and do the best I can. Give it red-hot go, and the rest of it will fall into place. I’m out of contract at the end of this year so who knows. If I get a tap on the shoulder and told I’m no longer required at Hawthorn, then that will be it. But I’m keen to at least have another year.


We’ll go through that at the end of the season and if there’s no longer a spot for me at the Hawks, I’d look at all options.


But first things first. I’m so close now. A dog didn’t help, but plenty of people did.


My mum and dad, Kathy and Ian, have been terrific support. They go to all the Tassie games we play and they come over here every six weeks or so to watch games. They went to all five of my Grand Finals. So supportive and little frustrated as well, especially the times I’ve been close to playing and then another issue has arisen. They ride it with me and they’ve been terrific.



The medical team at Hawthorn has been amazing. Physio Andrew Lambart has been with me the whole way through; organising rehabilitation programs, treating me, visiting me all the way through all of my setbacks.


Ben Janson, the rehab guy, has been by my side all through this year. Getting me through, doing an awesome job, the same as Michael Makdissi, the club doctor.


A few of the guys rag me out and call me peg leg or old man, give me shit. That’s been better than it sounds.





Footy is all I’ve known. My whole life. I wanted to play AFL since I was seven. I’ve made lifelong friends and had an incredible journey. I’m so lucky to have enjoyed a heap of success, won premierships. It’s been unbelievable. Nothing but good things.


Even the past two years have taught me a lot. You must be resilient. You have to hang in there as long as you can and have faith that it will turn out okay.


If you are struggling, make sure you speak up. Get help and speak to someone about it.


These setbacks can make you stronger as a person. Push through it all and hopefully there’s blue sky at the end of it.


One day soon I’m going to dream about running onto the MCG and playing footy. I’m going to wake up and it will be real.


My dream now is to play every game, get some continuity. I have five more games to get to 250, which would be unbelievable, and I want to prove my worth and stay on for another year.


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