The last man standing, a premiership hero of PAFC, a true champion of the game at AFL level today announced he would be retiring after the Richmond game in round 8.
Well done to the man, its not often a player can leave the game on his own terms, with the support of Ken Hinkley, Kane Cornes will have that luxury. Some supporters are disappointed he isn’t finalising his contract before retirement but who can begrudge a servant of the club putting himself first at this time. The opportunity he has created is unique, the position a one time opportunity and with this he has to think of himself before the game. Kane isn’t choosing to leave to play for another club, Kane isn’t choosing to leave to sell cars, Kane is leaving to help the community, the decision would have been difficult. As a leader of the players, I’m sure Kane feels he’s letting his team mates down by not seeing out the 2015 journey, but like bush fires, devastation creates growth.
The Loss of Kane Cornes is devastating to our structure he is a vital player when on song, but who will choose to put their hand up and fight for his spot? There are 16 players on our list no guaranteed to receive a game every week, wouldn’t one think those boys will be excited by the opportunity this creates? There will be 14 rounds to cement their spot in the side.
Back onto Kane however, my famous memory of Kane will be his competitiveness and resilience. Kane was the stopper of ball magnets, but not only that the accumulator of many disposals, so much so he led our disposal count in the following years (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013), how many so called taggers can claim this accomplishment. What this shows is Kane loved the contest, he told his opposition player, stop me get the ball or disregard me and I’ll influence the game.
His greatest match ups on star players would have to be Simon Black and Sam Mitchell. Fantastic players for the game themselves, more often than not, they could not escape the clutches of Kane Cornes. Black was viewed by former coach Leigh Matthews as the Lions best player, so for Cornes to pretty much beat him in every game in the early and mid 2000’s is an amazing achievement. Clearly the 2004 premiership will be his highlight in addition to playing so many games with his brother, it was the disruptive and controversial period under Matthew Primus that Kane Cornes career was almost lost to the club. Primus clearly had a different vision for the club, however credit to Keith Thomas and Ken Hinkley they fought hard to keep Kane at the club and continue his career.
Ports lucky to have a Glenelg boy the son of a Glenelg great become an Port Adelaide AFL legend. Good luck protecting the community Kane.
Hear Macca and Rick discuss Cornes tonight at 8pm.
Kane Cornes record of achievement
2000 National Draft, pick 20 (from Glenelg/Sacred Heart College)
Debut: Round 10, 2001 v Hawthorn, MCG
Brownlow Votes: 62
Port Adelaide AFL cap number: 61
Games (as of 14 May 2015): 298 Goals: 92
AFL Premiership Player (2004)
AFL Pre-Season Premiership Player (2001,2002)
Hall of Fame Tribute Match (2008)
John Cahill Medal (2007,2008,2010, 2012)
Most Improved Player (2004)
Leading Disposals (2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013)
VFL/AFL games record holder in number 18
3rd pair of brothers (with Chad) to play 550 VFL/AFL games