Injury hit Bradshaw calls time on career - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Injury hit Bradshaw calls time on career

Adrian Warren 17/06/2011 04:53:53 PM Comments (0)

The fairytale ending Daniel Bradshaw sought was crushed by reality, as uncertainty and the relentless grind of repeated rehabilitation prompted the injury-plagued Sydney AFL forward to announce his retirement on Friday.

By any standards,32-year-old Bradshaw enjoyed a successful career, winning the 2001 and 2003 premierships with Brisbane.

He headed their goalkicking list in three seasons, despite his career crossing over at different times with legendary Lions' forwards Jonathan Brown and Alastair Lynch and remains nine goals ahead of the former as Brisbane's all-time leading goalkicker.

Chronic knee problems marred his one and a half season stint with Sydney, preventing him from playing at all in 2011, though he bagged a creditable 28 goals from his nine 2010 appearances for the Swans.

He said the knee felt good going into round one but realised there might be a problem as he experienced pain when he tried to ramp up his training.

Described as a superstar and true legend of the game by Sydney coach John Longmire, Bradshaw pulled the plug a few weeks after undergoing another bout of surgery.

"The pain is still there, so I guess at some point you've got to stop banging your head against a brick wall and just move forward and look forward to life after footy," Bradshaw told reporters on Friday.

"At the end of the day I've lost a fair bit of confidence in the knee and I don't really think I'm going to get back to the way I want to play.

"I don't really want to be out there playing at 80 per cent, it's obviously not good for myself and it's not good for the team.

"The knee is not quite right and the rehab and the uncertainty of it all, I've just pretty much had enough at the end of the day."

"It's obviously sad the way it's ended ... you'd like to have that fairytale, but it doesn't always turn out that way."

While he didn't leave Brisbane on the best of terms after Lions' coach and former teammate Michael Voss offered him as trade bait, Bradshaw's reflections on his time at the club were overwhelmingly positive.

"I'm fine with all that now, Brisbane have given me a lot in terms of what I've been able to achieve there and I've got a lot of good mates there, so there's no ill feeling there at all," Bradshaw said.

Not surprisingly, Bradshaw nominated his two premierships at Brisbane as his career highlights.

"If someone had said to me 16 years ago I was going to play over 200 games and play for as long as I did and be a part of two premierships, I probably would have laughed at them, it's obviously something I'll look back on and be really proud of," Bradshaw said.

He was optimistic Sydney had the personnel to prosper up forward, with young centre half forward Sam Reid winning this week's Rising Star nomination.

Bradshaw planned to return home to Wodonga and investigate some business opportunities in his immediate post-AFL life.

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