Collingwood defender Chris Mayne will retire at the end of the season.
The 32-year-old informed teammates at training today he has decided that the end to Collingwood’s 2021 AFL campaign will also be the end of his distinguished 14 year AFL career.
“The time is right, personally and professionally,” Mayne said.
“From a family perspective, Britt and I have two young children and we want them to settle and share more time with our families in Perth. From a football perspective, I don’t feel that I can squeeze much more out of myself.
“I still love the game and want to continue trying to get a kick at some level next year but at the highest level I recognise it’s getting tougher, not easier.”
Mayne has played 245 matches to date - 172 with Fremantle and 73 with Collingwood – and across the seasons he has proven himself versatile, resilient and possessed of a first rate football mind.
Mayne created a name for himself as a smart, dead-eye forward with the Dockers and played in their 2013 grand final side inside the forward 50 alongside the likes of Matthew Pavlich and Michael Walters.
His next grand final appearance, in Collingwood colours in 2018, was as a defender after earlier reinventing himself as a wingman. The resurrection of his career at Collingwood after playing three matches in his first season with the club in 2017 is an example of resilience still highly regarded within the Collingwood change room.
With similar forethought and discipline, Mayne has been preparing for his post-playing life, possibly in coaching. He will complete a teaching degree next year, has completed a diploma in youth counselling, graduated from the Level 3 AFL coaching course and the AFL List management course.
“We all know the last match is coming. I didn’t want to be caught short or unprepared. I hope that I can pass on my experiences as a player, at two wonderful clubs, in some fashion. As I said, I still love the game,” Mayne said.
Collingwood GM of Football, Graham Wright, thanked Mayne and his family for the decision to uproot their lives in 2017 for a new start and for the team-oriented way in which Mayne ultimately vindicated that call.
“‘Mayney’ leaves us with everyone wishing him, Britt and their children the very best. He gave all he had and we can’t ask for more from any player.”