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Peers Vote Docker Fyfe Best

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Fremantle midfielder Nat Fyfe has won the Leigh Matthews Trophy as the AFL Players' Association MVP. The award is decided with players from all clubs nominating three teammates. Each club then tallies the votes for their players. Out of that, the field is narrowed to 54 players. Players then award votes on a 3-2-1 basis for the 54 nominees. Fyfe just edged out Gary Ablett in one of the closest counts in the history of the award.

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Club Champion Awards

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Shane Mumford has won the 2014 Kevin Sheedy Medal in his first season with the Giants. The former Sydney premiership ruckman was presented with the medal by its namesake, inaugural coach Kevin Sheedy who has remained at the club as a coaching director. Mumford, 28, crossed from the Swans at the end of 2013 and took out the club champion award despite missing five games through injury. He polled in 13 of the 17 games he played to finish with 81 votes. Co-captain Callan Ward and small forward Devon Smith were equal runners-up on 72 votes. Midfielder Adam Treloar finished fourth on 62 votes and vice-captain Heath Shaw fifth with 56 votes.
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Tigers Dream Run Continues

Brook “Boris” Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA

Richmond players faced St Kilda at the MCG in the final game of Round 22, knowing their fate was well and truly in their own hands. Riding the wave of an incredible seven game winning streak that included on the road wins against the West Coast Eagles and Adelaide Crows, the Tigers had to beat the Saints to keep their slim Finals' chances alive. After Round 14, Richmond held a 3-10 win-loss record, placing them 16th on the AFL premiership ladder. Fast forward to Sunday, and as the Tigers ran out onto the hallowed turf of the MCG, a win would send them to 11-10 and into the Top Eight with one round to play.

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Two More Hang Up Boots

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Just ahead of the Round 18 match against Richmond, Eagle ruckman Dean Cox announced that 2014 would be his final season. Cox, 33, admitted that it takes him two or three days to recover after games and that he felt it was time to retire. He also said the current form of ruck partners Nic Nainatui, Scott Lycett and Callum Sinclair had made the decision easier. While he admitted it would have been nice to be the first Eagle to reach 300 games he said he had never planned on hanging around just to reach a certain number of games. Cox is planning on moving into a coaching role and has spent much of this season working with his fellow ruckmen in a coaching capacity.

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Thanks For The Memories

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

Adelaide defender Ben Rutten, 31, will retire at the end of the season. It was a decision he made several months ago. In making the announcement, Rutten said he wanted to finish while still contributing to the team and felt the time was right. He believes the club is in good hands with "a talented and motivated playing group". Rutten, who will finish with more than 230 games to his credit, started with West Adelaide as a junior. He was overlooked in two national drafts before the Crows added him to their rookie list in 2002. He debuted in 2003 against Fremantle and kicked three consecutive goals with his first three kicks. He was named All Australian in 2005 and finished top three in the club champion awards in 2005 and 2011.

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Saints Lift For Lenny

Rick Browner reporting for AFANA from Perth, Western Australia

Saint Kilda honored star player Lenny Hayes who announced his retirement just days before the start of Round 18 by comprehensively thrashing Premiership contenders, the Fremantle Dockers. From the outset the Saints looked sharp and committed to the ball and - for the first time this season - showed the spirit they are famous for. Despite being on the bottom of the Ladder the Saints played above themselves to win one of the most memorable games in their club’s history. No-one gave them any hope of winning before the start of the game. Fremantle coach Ross Lyon even chose this round to rest some of his marquee players and let the lesser lights gain some match experience. The move backfired as his side was left wanting at every stage of the game.
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Round 20 Milestones

Round 20 milestones include:

250 games: Gary Ablett (GC)
200 games: Ted Richards (SYD), Brent Stanton (ESS)
150 games: Bryce Gibbs (CARL), Daniel Merrett (BRIS)
100 games: Dennis Armfield (CARL), Chris Mayne (FRE), Tyson Goldsack (COL)
50 games: Phil Davis (GWS), Jack Gunston (HAW)
50 club games: Danny Stanley (GC)

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Round 19 Milestones

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chicago

This round's milestones include:

250 games: Brent Guerra (HAW)
200 games: Justin Koschitzke (StK)
150 games: Brent Staker (BRIS)
50 games: Luke Parker (SYD)
50 games: Brodie Smith (ADE)
50 games: Daniel Talia (ADE)

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Tigers Roar for Four

Brook "Boris" Kilpatrick reporting for AFANA

The Sunday special this week belonged to Richmond and St Kilda, two clubs with differing fortunes and vastly different short term futures. The Saints, only a couple of years removed from a Grand Final appearance, seem to have bypassed their potential Premiership window as their older players move away from their prime. The Tigers on the other hand, have put a dark recent past behind them, forging a bright future on the back of 60,000 plus members and a three game winning streak that should help them build towards their first Finals appearance since 2001. The sideshow to every St Kilda versus Richmond clash is the match up of gun forward cousins in Nick (St Kilda) and Jack (Richmond) Riewoldt, with Jack having the better of the spoils over the last few contests including a seven goal haul the last time these two teams met. Tiger young gun Nick Vlastuin was a late withdrawal prior to game time, while St Kilda were without feisty goal sneak Stephen Milne after off field issues that could potentially end a tumultuous but effective career.

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Milne Suspended After Police Charges

by Lisa Albergo reporting for AFANA from Chciago

In 2004, a 19 year old woman accused St Kilda footballers Stephen Milne and Leigh Montagna of r*pe. The incident allegedly happened at Montagna's home after the club's family day. No charges were ever laid against the pair once the investigations were completed. In 2010, the Office of Police Integrity reviewed the case after two former policemen revealed that their investigation, even though done by the book, had been compromised. The OPI was concerned that the investigation had been interfered with, and their review revealed that the initial investigations had been flawed.

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