Main content

Edwards a ‘golden oldie’

Round 16: Electric Edwards slots two Watch Shane Edwards' highlights in the Round 16 win over Adelaide.

It’s extremely rare for an AFL player fast approaching 30 to be in career-best form, but that’s most definitely the case with Shane Edwards.

After playing a significant role in Richmond’s 2017 premiership year, the 222-game Edwards, who turns 30 in October, has been consistently performing at an extremely high level throughout season 2018.

His statistical numbers indicate just how much he’s thriving.

The talented playmaker is averaging an AFL career-high 20.2 disposals per match and is ranked No. 1 in the competition for goal assists and No. 5 for score involvements.

But those ‘stats’ alone don’t do justice to the brilliant passages of play that Edwards has managed to produce on such a regular basis – the lightning quick, pinpoint handpasses, perfectly weighted foot passes, deft tap-ons, plus his capacity to cleverly sidestep opponents, and seemingly have so much time with ball in hand.

The morning after helping the Tigers eclipse Adelaide under the MCG Friday night lights, Edwards provided radio show ‘Off The Bench’ with an explanation of his impressive growth as a player following an inconsistent start to his AFL career.

“Early on, I’d work on something and then I’d forget the last thing I’d worked on. So I was constantly trying to put it all together in a game and I’d lose concentration and fall out of games here and there,” Edwards said.

“I think I had the skills, but I just couldn’t put it all together.

“I’m still slowly working at that to remain consistent over games . . . just playing to my strengths.”

Edwards’ constant desire to create opportunities for teammates on-field is a major feature of the way he plays the game, but in keeping with his unassuming nature he prefers discussing the side’s overall selflessness.

“We preach that – to play unselfish – because selfish acts cause a lot of trouble. And when someone is unselfish that also it’s contagious,” he said.

“So that’s a big part of our game plan, to make sure that everyone gets involved and it’s as good giving a goal as it is getting a goal.”