Matthew Pavlich, the legendary Australian Rules football player, has retired in a blaze of glory. ABC reports that the Fremantle Dockers champion played his last and victorious game against Western Bulldogs at Subiaco Oval.
Despite having a disappointing AFL season this year, the Fremantle Dockers team bid farewell to the retiring 34-year-old legendary player, who finished his glorious career by enjoying a win in the 353rd game of his 17-year-long distinguished career. Apart from being considered as Fremantle Football Club’s best and fairest player, Matthew Pavlich has also earned the merit of representing Australia internationally for over a decade. The legendary sports star also captained his football club from 2007 to 2015.
— Jim Wilson (@JimWilsonTV) August 28, 2016
Matthew Pavlich has been known to dominate matches and lead his team to victory, however, the sportsman was in an altogether different mood while arriving for his farewell game. A day before his farewell, Matthew Pavlich was in Melbourne and he had planned to take an early morning flight to Perth along with former players like Brad Johnson. According to The Australian, Matthew Pavlich continued sleeping through his alarm as he had set his clock on Perth time by mistake.
Fortunately, he was woken by a phone call by Brad Johnson, the former Western Bulldogs player, who was frantically trying to track down the Dockers star. Matthew Pavlich then hurriedly made his way to the Melbourne airport by persuading his cab driver to speed up on the Tullamarine freeway.
— Lachie Neale (@LachieNeale27) August 29, 2016
Arriving at Subiaco Oval, Matthew Pavlich motivated his teammates to give their best rather than focusing on winning the game for his happy farewell. Pavlich himself said that he enjoyed the game thoroughly and went on to give the Fremantle fans a moment to celebrate by kicking his 700th goal for his club.
Subiaco Oval was swarmed by the “purple army” of Fremantle supporters who were dressed in purple, the official a color of the club.
Despite being disappointed that his club did not make it into the AFL premiership finals this year, Matthew Pavlich has retired as a contented player who has cherished every moment of his career. And now, the legend feels that it is time to try his hand at other things apart from Australian Rules football. According to Yahoo!, Matthew Pavlich admits that it is time that he ventures into other areas apart from sports.
“I’ve been doing this for 17 years, I need to do something different, I need to get into another industry and challenge myself in another sphere of life.”
— Fremantle Dockers (@freodockers) August 29, 2016
Even though he has admitted to being too tired to continue with his childhood dream of being a football player, Matthew Pavlich still exhibits the determination, discipline, and the passion for excelling in life that he has developed while playing the sport. Ultimately, it was the football player’s sheer determination that helped him to become the true champion that he is.
There was a time in Matthew Pavlich’s life when he was too frail from previous injuries to endure even his first training session. In fact, the training proved to be an insurmountable challenge for the budding player because he had to be admitted to an intensive care unit when he could no longer withstand the rigors of the training. However, the resolute Matthew Pavlich had already set his eyes on the goal and he ultimately beat the odds to dominate the sport. Yahoo! reports that, despite being a champion, a humble Matthew Pavlich credited his Fremantle Football Club for putting him in various situations that helped to groom his career.
— Fremantle Dockers (@freodockers) August 28, 2016
For Matthew Pavlich’s fans, it was sad to see their favorite sporting legend retire as many feel that his exit from the game has left a big void that will be difficult to fill. Perhaps the greatest testimony to Matthew Pavlich’s popularity comes from the experience of Rhonda Irving, a die-hard fan who continued to enjoy the player’s final game on her hospital television screen despite having suffered a stroke.
According to ABC, Rhonda spoke about how Matthew Pavlich has become a role model for the generations to come.
[Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images]
“He was a leader on and off the field and did so much work, everyone knew him and everyone loved him, even other teams.”