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McPharlin calls time

Luke McPharlin announces his retirement. Luke McPharlin has announced his retirement

After 256 AFL games and 16 seasons, Fremantle’s Luke McPharlin announced his retirement on Wednesday.
 
The Fremantle Life Member and All Australian told his team mates at a meeting this morning that he had played his final game.
 
‘Woosh’, as he is known around the club, will be remembered as one of Fremantle’s greatest players.
 
McPharlin, 33, said even before the season started, he expected it would be his last.
 
“At the end of last year I considered it (retiring) pretty strongly,” he said.
 
“There was always a scenario in the back of my mind that this would be my last season.

Life after footy
 
“Ultimately, it’s time to hang up the boots and move onto other things.
 
“When you get to my age and my time in the game, there are a lot of factors that need to be considered.
 
“That’s certainly my wife and family.
 
“The coach, strength and fitness staff and, of course, the way I feel about playing another year.”
 
There were moving scenes after Friday night’s Preliminary Final loss, when a visibly emotional McPharlin and his wife Kalinz, walked together around the ground where he plied his craft.
 
“It surprised me, the emotional reaction I had, when I walked on the ground for the last time,” he said.
 
“A lot of memories came flooding back.”
 
McPharlin said his 18 games this season had exceeded his expectations but he was ready to forgo another gruelling pre-season.
 
“The will and desire to climb the mountain is too much for me, if you know that’s the case, it’s probably time to step away,” he said.
 
McPharlin has been a Fremantle Docker for more than half of the club’s existence, after he arrived in 2001.

Respect for our McPharlin
 
His first two AFL seasons were spent at Hawthorn after he was taken at pick 10 in the 1999 National Draft.
 
McPharlin’s 2015 season ended in round 22 with a calf injury, which ruled him out of the final few rounds.
 
His last appearance in Fremantle colours was against Melbourne at Domain Stadium.
 
It was a textbook McPharlin outing with 21 disposals and 11 marks.
 
He took part in Fremantle’s inaugural Grand Final in 2013 and made the All Australian team in 2012.
 
McPharlin sits second on the club’s games record list with 244, behind Matthew Pavlich (335).

The views in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of the AFL or its clubs