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Cats legend hangs up boots

October 9, 2013 10:27 AM

Corey's greatest play Watch Joel Corey produce on of the game's greatest smothers
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Joel Corey will retire a Cats legend

Geelong midfielder Joel Corey has announced his retirement after 276 games and three premierships.

Corey finishes ranked sixth on the Cats all time games played list and second in club history with 23 finals and 182 wins.

“Football has provided some great opportunities," Corey said.

"I have been fortunate to have met outstanding people, from players, coaches, staff and trainers that I am proud to call my friends.

"The club has always put its people first, and has always been there for me, helping my development and challenging and supporting me as both a player and a person.

"There are many people to thank. The supporters that have accepted me as a Geelong person and shared their club with me. My family and friends for their unbelievable support that continues and to the media that always treated me fairly.

"The club is in great shape to continue to be successful. I wish the club, the players and all the people that play a variety of roles behind the scenes all the best in the future years. It has been a privilege to play for the Geelong Football Club and I will always be grateful to all the people that have made the experience so fulfilling.”

Geelong coach Chris Scott praised Corey, who was one of the most respected players at Simonds Stadium.

"Joel has been the ultimate team first player, and is one of the league's most respected players for the way he competed and played the game," Scott said.

"Joel was one of the most critical players in the Geelong teams that claimed the three premierships. He did a huge amount of contested work in the midfield and was one of the bravest and hardest players in the game.

"He could easily have chased personal accolades, but he instead always put the team's needs ahead of anything else. His team mates loved playing with him and he was a true leader around the club.

"Hopefully Joel stays in the game as he has a lot to offer. He is a player that we have been privileged to have for so long, playing and preparing for the game the right way, week in week out."

Corey was drafted from East Perth after the 1999 season and debuted against St Kilda in 2000.

He has gone onto be one of the most respected players that club has known. While the team always came first, Corey has been recognised throughout his career. He won the Carji Greeves medal as the Cats' best and fairest in 2005 and 2008 and was twice named to the All Australian team.

Corey was also a member of two NAB Cup winning teams and represented Australia in the international rules series against Ireland. Over his career he polled 92 Brownlow votes.

A big game player, Corey averaged 27 disposals in his four grand final appearances, and he helped the Cats to seven top four finishes and 10 finals campaigns during his career at Simonds Stadium.