Fremantle champion and life member Luke McPharlin has called time on his illustrious career after 256 AFL games.
The 33-year-old told his teammates at the Dockers of his decision on Tuesday morning.
“There was always a scenario in the back of my mind that this would be my last season,” McPharlin said.
“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.” – luke mcpharlin
“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.”
McPharlin missed Fremantle’s preliminary final loss to Hawthorn last Friday night. He took to the ground with wife Kalinz post-match and shed a few tears as the impact of his imminent retirement hit.
“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.”
The key defender, who is second on Fremantle’s games record list, said the taxing nature of another pre-season was too much for his mind and body.
“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’s first two AFL seasons were spent at Hawthorn after he was taken at pick No.10 in the 1999 national draft.
He was a member of Fremantle’s inaugural grand final team in 2013 and made the All Australian team in 2012.