Cox keen to end career with West Coast - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cox keen to end career with West Coast

By Justin Chadwick 12/08/2010 07:20:25 PM Comments (0)

West Coast ruckman Dean Cox hopes he remains an Eagle for life, believing he is capable of playing on for up to four more seasons in the AFL.

West Coast's dismal season, which has yielded just four wins to date, has led some critics to suggest the Eagles should trade Cox and injury-plagued midfielder Daniel Kerr at season's end.

But the 29-year-old, who will notch his 200th game in Saturday night's clash with Port Adelaide at AAMI Stadium, declared he wasn't going anywhere, claiming the continued emergence of ruck partner Nic Naitanui would only prolong his career.

"When the club's in the position they're in at the minute they (critics) always look for something and mine and Daniel's name gets thrown up because we're in the latter part of our career," Cox said on Thursday.

"It's all rumour and innuendo that's been started from elsewhere.

"I certainly think I've got three or four years of good football ahead of me and the club know that as well.

"I'm still contracted next year.

"If my body permits and my form warrants it then I'll get another contract at the end of next year."

Naitanui led the club's ruck division earlier this year as Cox, who endured an interrupted pre-season, slowly built up match fitness.

Cox admitted his 2010 campaign had been a tad disappointing and said he would embrace the prospect of handing the lead ruck role to Naitanui in the near future.

"During those few years when I was doing the majority by myself it was very taxing on my body," Cox said.

"The body feels good now compared to any other time in the season of past years.

"Hopefully we can work in tandem for a few more years yet and once I step back he's ready to be unleashed on the competition."

Cox played a pivotal role in West Coast's 2006 premiership success but said he was unsure whether he would experience the ultimate success again before his career ended.

"What you want is the footy club to be back where it's known to be ... and if I can shape it and I don't play in one, well so be it, I'll be the first one on the plane to watch it," Cox said.

When Cox first arrived at the club via pick No.28 in the 2000 rookie draft, serious doubts were raised about whether he could ever make it in the AFL.

But after an eye-opening pre-season that year in which the 203cm country lad struggled to keep pace, he put in the hard yards to revolutionise the role of a ruckman.

"There's some well-documented stories about when he arrived at the club and couldn't keep up in the 400m runs and people were saying, 'What have we got here? This bloke is not going to be able to play'," Eagles coach John Worsfold said.

"To become one of the elite ruckmen and runners in the game, he's been amazing.

"And he's got a lot of years of really good footy left in him, there's no doubt about that."

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