MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 02: Alex Rance of the Tigers in action during the Richmond Tigers training session at Punt Road Oval on December 02, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 02: Alex Rance of the Tigers in action during the Richmond Tigers training session at Punt Road Oval on December 02, 2019 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images)

Rance return ‘less likely’: Balme

Richmond general manager of football Neil Balme said any chance of Alex Rance going back on his retirement is getting "less likely".

Speaking to SEN 1629 Breakfast, Balme said the initial decision was 'unexpected'.

"It was not so much a shock, but it was a bit unexpected," he said.

 

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"We thought we'd got to the point where he was able to cope with the things he wanted to do and still play footy.

"But he decided that he wasn't.

"You can't talk someone out of that.

"We have to respect what he thinks.

"We're still in the back of our mind hoping he might think about coming back, but that's getting less likely I think.

"He's such a strong-minded kid that he doesn't tell you things for the fun of it."

Alex Rance retired late last year. Picture: Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images.
Alex Rance retired late last year. Picture: Michael Willson/AFL Photos via Getty Images.

Rance played his 200th game in round one of 2019 and tore his ACL, and was expected to make a big return in 2020 to help the Tigers with their premiership defence.

Balme added it's something the club has to cope with.

"So we have to accept the fact that maybe it is the end for him," he said.

"It'll be disappointing because he's such a wonderful player.

"But in the end as a club, you've just got to cope with it if it's something the individual wants to do."

Rance finished his career as a five-time All-Australian, a one-time Tigers best and fairest and a premiership player.



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