Brett Burton to retire at season's end - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Brett Burton to retire at season's end

By Steve Larkin 21/06/2010 05:18:30 PM Comments (0)

Adelaide's human highlight reel Brett Burton has become the third senior Crow to announce a retirement from the AFL.

Burton, 32, says he'll retire at the end of the season having been worn down by more than ten knee operations over the course of his career.

The high-flying forward, nicknamed Birdman for his freakish marking ability, follows Crows captain Simon Goodwin and Tyson Edwards into retirement.

Goodwin will quit at the end of the season, Edwards retired two matches ago and Adelaide's games record-holder Andrew McLeod is also expected to halt his decorated career at year's end.

Burton has managed only six games this year and is currently recovering from his latest knee surgery.

The 177-game veteran hopes to return to playing in the SANFL in three weeks and then press for an AFL recall.

He was adamant that, unlike Edwards, he did not want a gift farewell game.

"It will be dependant on my form," Burton said.

"I don't want to be given a game, I will earn a game on my own right.

"And if I am not good enough to be in the best 22, I will play at the Eagles (Burton's SANFL club) and enjoy my footy.

"I'd like to think am still good enough to play at the (AFL) level and I will prove that for the rest of the year."

Burton said retirement crystallised for him in the past fortnight when his recovery prolonged.

"I have taken eight weeks this time to get it fixed instead of six weeks," he said.

"Part of me then thought 'I have only played about 30 games in the last three years' and when you look at it, it's not a lot of games.

"So I guess it was my body getting to a point where I had to come to a decision.

"Five years ago, you could play at 90 per cent and carry injuries.

"Today, the game is so quick, the rotations and the intensity and the speed that the game is played at, you can't go out there at anything less than 100 per cent."

But Burton said despite his hefty injury toll, he would retire grateful.

"I don't want to sit here and whinge - I have played 177 games and been given an opportunity to play at the highest level ... some people have had career-ending injuries," he said.

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