Shane Edwards will call time on his illustrious 16-year AFL career at the conclusion of Richmond's 2022 season.
The three-time premiership, 300-game star announced the news to teammates today, thanking the Club for giving him the time and space to reach the decision on his own.
“It is time for me to step aside and move on just as players did for me when I started,” he said.
“I am trying to play to the best of my ability out there, but it is pretty obvious to me that I won’t be helping us move forward next year.
“The Club has given me everything, it has changed my life forever and I will always be connected to the Richmond Football Club.
“My teammates are what I will miss the most, we have been through so much together and always had fun. I will miss putting the jumper on before a game and when we really flick the switch. I love the 15 minutes after a win as well, it is the best feeling.
“When I look back on my career, what I think of is how lucky I have been; on the injury front- I have never really had a big injury, and I got to come to a big club with really passionate supporters.
"I am lucky the Korin Gamadji Institute emerged upstairs a couple of years into my career as well, and I (am grateful to) have seen so many sides of the game as a player.
"I have won premierships and a few wooden spoons and finished everywhere in between as well.”
Selected with Richmond's second pick in the 2006 AFL National Draft (No. 26 overall), Edwards has flourished at Richmond since the beginning.
Despite a light frame, the South Australian made his debut in Round 4 of the 2007 season before playing 16 games and winning the Club's best first-year player award.
Excluding 2020, Edwards would go on to play 15 or more games in each of his next 15-seasons, becoming one of just five players in Richmond's history to reach the 300-game milestone.
Edwards became the first Indigenous Tiger to reach the feat, a fitting reward for his standing as an Indigenous leader at the Club for many years.
A big game player, Edwards received Norm Smith Medal votes in two of the Tigers' three premierships.
The 2018 All-Australian also captained the Club for six matches in the premiership-winning 2019 campaign, a season in which he also finished runner-up in the Jack Dyer Medal.
Edwards has booted 186 goals from his 301 AFL games, racked up over 5,000 disposals, laid 836 tackles, and had 210 goal assists.
Richmond coach Damien Hardwick said Edwards epitomises the Richmond journey.
“Shane came in as a young player and leaves as a proud Richmond and Indigenous man,” he said.
“The journey he came on reflects us as a Club and what we have achieved. Shane leaves us as a three-time premiership player and All Australian. It resembles everything we have become.
“What we have gained from Shane is incredible insight, as individuals and about Indigenous culture as well.
“The lessons we have learned from Shane as a player can never be understated. The way he came in and impacted games when we needed a spark, is the one thing I will remember from Shane as a player.
“There is nothing more comforting as a coach than having a player you know you can count on, and here is hoping we have got a couple more games to go on the journey.”