Shane Edwards is set to play his 300th game for the Richmond Football Club this weekend.
Across 16 seasons and 299 outings to date, Edwards has been a consistent performer for the Tigers and was instrumental in their recent success of three premierships.
He was an All-Australian in 2018, finished second in the Jack Dyer Medal in the premiership year of 2019 and has been key in critical moments throughout.
Edwards may not have won as many individual accolades as some of his esteemed teammates, but he did step right up in Grand Finals.
Against Alaide in 2017 he was awarded two Norm Smith Medal votes after 25 disposals, eight inside 50s and seven clearances.
He then attracted four votes for 27 touches and nine clearances in the dramatic come-from-behind win over Geelong in 2020.
Wedged in between was 21 disposals, six clearances, six tackles and five inside 50s in the 2019 triumph over GWS.
They are the proudest moments of his career as an individual.
“Playing well in Grand Finals is something that I’m most proud of individually,” he told SEN.com.au ahead of his 300th game.
“In 2017 and 2020 I got some Norm Smith votes and I couldn’t believe I actually played well in a Grand Final.
“In 2013, ’14 and ’15 when we kept losing elimination finals, I played really average in those games. Doubts creep in with finals.
“Having a good qualifying final against Geelong in 2017 really got the monkey off the back. I played alright and it eventually built into playing really good Grand Finals.
“Playing well on the biggest stage is what I’m most proud of.”
Edwards has seen plenty of highlights and been heavily involved in some massive moments over the course of his career.
He has witnessed the likes of Dustin Martin do his thing, Jack Riewoldt take hangers and kick important goals, Trent Cotchin lay massive tackles and Dylan Grimes beat opponents on a weekly basis.
But the moment that stands out to him the most was the goal of debutant Marlion Pickett in the thumping 2019 Grand Final over the Giants.
“The biggest moment was Marlion’s goal in 2019,” he said.
“I was nervous going into the game, but imagine how nervous he was in his first game. We diverted all of our nervous energy into making sure Marlion was alright.
“Then seeing him kick that goal I thought, ‘I can’t believe it, what a day. There’s no way this is happening, this is scripted, it has to be’.
“It felt like I was in a movie.”
Against the Brisbane Lions at the MCG this Sunday, Edwards will become the fifth Richmond player to 300 games, following Kevin Bartlett, Jack Dyer, Francis Bourke and current teammate Riewoldt.
He also becomes just the eighth Indigenous player in the history of the game to reach the milestone.