Hawthorn premiership defender James Frawley has made the decision to call time on his AFL career after notching up 239 games.
A proud country boy hailing from Ballarat, James ‘Chip’ Frawley was recruited from the North Ballarat Rebels in the TAC Cup, taken by the Demons with Pick 12 in the 2006 AFL Draft.
After 139 games as a Demon, Frawley swapped red-and-blue for brown-and-gold joining Hawthorn as a free agent at the end of the 2014 season.
In his first season as a Hawk, Frawley quickly fitted into the fold and played a crucial role in the club’s 2015 premiership.
Continually coming up against the competition’s best tall-forwards, Frawley leaves the game renowned for his work rate and reliability.
In calling time on his AFL career, Frawley noted the importance of the suppo
rt of those closest to him.
“I would like to thank my beautiful wife, Kasey, for being by my side and riding every high and low of the past 10 years with me,” said Frawley.
“My little boy Sonny for being an absolute joy over the last year.
“I would especially like to thank all my teammates over the journey, I have made so many friendships that will last way beyond football and for that I am so thankful."
“My family and friends have been there since day one, particularly my parents.
“The coaching and support staff for their unwavering support of me over my time at both Hawthorn and Melbourne Football Clubs.
“I am looking forward to the next chapter with my family, whatever that may bring.”
Hawthorn Senior Coach Alastair Clarkson paid tribute to the defender’s contribution across his career in the brown and gold.
“Chip has been a significant contributor for our club over the past six seasons, following his recruitment from Melbourne Football Club at the end of 2014,” said Clarkson.
“His capacity to negate the influence of the opposition's most potent key forwards was clearly evi
dent in our 2015 premiership campaign where he limited the influence of Taylor Walker (Adel), Matthew Pavlich (Frem) and Josh Kennedy (WCE) in successive weeks.
“Across his career, he has been reliable and disciplined, using his speed and strength to great effect. His country background and humility endeared him to all, especially his teammates, many of whom will be lifelong mates.
“Kasey has been a great support on that journey and together with young Sonny, they look forward to the adventures ahead. We thank Chip for his service to the game across two clubs and acknowledge and applaud his sacrifice and commitment to the game for over a decade.”
Frawley made his AFL debut in Round 9 2007 and made a smooth transition into Melbourne’s senior side playing nine AFL games in his opening season.
2010 was a breakout year for the defender. At the youthful age of 21, Frawley emerged as one of the competition’s finest backmen, named in the 2010 All Australian Team and finishing second in Melbourne’s best and fairest.
With just two seasons under his belt, Frawley’s impressive work in the back-pocket also granted him h a ticket to Ireland as a member of the 2010 Australian International Rules Team. Frawley was impressive again in 2011 and earned the honour of being named in the International Rules Team for a second year in a row.
Frawley joined the Hawks at the end of 2014 and cemented his spot in the senior line-up immediately. He was instrumental in the Hawks securing their three-peat, holding arguably the number one forward of the 2015 season, West Coast’s Josh Kennedy, goal-less the entire match.