This Saturday night when the Cats face the Dogs, Joel Selwood will celebrate his 350th game. In doing so, he becomes just the 21st player in V/AFL history to reach this feat.
Besides the milestone, Selwood has several other mini-milestones which he will or could break during the same weekend.
He’s experienced one of the most decorated careers in the AFL thus far. Here are his finest moments, accolades and some words from teammates:
How the story goes
Selwood was selected with Geelong’s first pick of the 2006 draft – pick seven. In 2007, he became the only player in history to win the Rising Star and a premiership in the same season.
This would only be the beginning of his successes, as he continued to reel in the accolades. Selwood went on the win two more premierships with the Cats in 2009 and 2011.
After being named vice-captain for the 2011 season, Selwood stepped up to the major role of captain in 2012. He succeeded the captaincy from Cameron Ling after the latter’s retirement after the 2011 season.
He achieved his first All-Australian selection in 2009, before going on to be selected a further five times (2010, 2013-14, 2016-17). In 2013, 2014 and 2016, Selwood wore captaincy honours in the respective All-Australian teams.
During his 15-year stay at Geelong so far, Selwood has won three club best and fairest awards, in 2010, 2013 and 2014.
A plethora of obscure achievements
Known for being hard at the football, Selwood is a four-time recipient of the AFLPA’s Most Courageous Player (2009, 2012-14).
This attribute has been demonstrated throughout his career, as he holds the V/AFL record for the most tackles in history (1,775).
The AFLPA awards have been kind to Selwood in the past. He has also been awarded the Best First-Year Player in 2007 and Best Captain in just his second season as captain, in 2013.
Selwood’s consistency has paid dividends, bringing him to the forefront of records. He is the fifth-fastest player in history to reach 100 games and the youngest Geelong player to reach 200 games (27-years-old).
In Round 3 of this season, Selwood snapped Stephen Kernahan’s 25-year old record of 226 games captained. Selwood now holds the ever-extending record of 241 games.
If the Cats are able to defeat the Dogs this weekend, Selwood will surpass Dick Reynolds’ record of 159 wins as captain – which he has currently equalled.
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Geelong through and through
Playing for one club for the entirety of your career sure makes it easier to stand out. But Selwood is simply a different breed, holding numerous achievements at Kardinia Park.
Selwood has amassed the most Brownlow Medal votes of any Geelong player in history. In just 2014, he broke the record of 137 votes, which he still holds now as it stands at 210 votes.
Just last year, he became the games record holder for the Cats, surpassing Corey Enright’s 332 games. He is now set to become the first Cat to reach 350.
In 2007, Selwood was drafted alongside Tom Hawkins, who now have played 299 games together – the third highest record for a pair of teammates.
On Saturday, the pair are due to play their 300th game together, which is already an extraordinary feat to achieve individually.
A team player
As captain of Geelong for over 10 years, Selwood is looked up to by many. This achievement is a big occasion, as it is only the 21st time in history that a player has reached 350 games.
His Geelong teammates have showed a lot of praise for their skipper and this week they put their feelings into words.
“Blood dripping down from the eye, screaming and pointing. I just picture that when I think of him,” Patrick Dangerfield said during the week.
“He’s a gladiator on the field. He always stands up in big moments, he’s super consistent, his ceiling is extraordinary.
“But then, he’s an even better person. You think it isn’t fair to have someone tick every box.”
The man who is running out with for the 300th time echoed Dangerfield’s sentiments.
“You’ll go down, in my eyes, as the greatest Geelong player to ever play for the club,” Tom Hawkins said in a one-on-one, speaking to Selwood.
“You’ve played 349 games and you’re certainly not done.”
The footballing world looks forward to seeing Selwood running out with Geelong this weekend, as the Cats look to prepare for another finals campaign.
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