MELBOURNE midfielder Luke Dunstan has announced his retirement after a career spanning 10 years, two clubs and 121 games.
After a standout season at VFL level in 2023 where he was last night named in the VFL team of the year, Dunstan's season came to an abrupt end after he tore his ACL while playing for Casey in the Wildcard match against North Melbourne.
The 28-year-old began his career at St Kilda but joined the Demons at the end of 2021, where he played five AFL games.
He was a consistent contributor for Casey and played a pivotal role in the Demons' drought-breaking VFL premiership 2022.
This year saw him average 29 disposals across 15 matches for Casey, before the devastating ACL injury ended his season.
Melbourne's GM of AFL Performance Alan Richardson wished Dunstan all the best for the next chapter.
"Luke's commitment to the team is a testament to his character. His resilience over the journey has been incredible and he has shown what it truly means to give your all for the team," Richardson said.
"We wish Luke the very best in all his future endeavours, knowing that whatever path he chooses, he will approach it with the same dedication and passion that defined his significant AFL journey."
Dunstan was selected by St Kilda with pick No.18 in the 2013 AFL Draft and made his debut in the opening round of the following season, awarded a Rising Star nomination for his impressive performance.
In 2021, a career-best season saw him poll 11 Brownlow Medal votes in only 12 games as a Saint, before making the move to Melbourne as an unrestricted free agent.
Reflecting on his decade-long career spanning two clubs, Dunstan acknowledged those who have contributed to his journey.
"I would just like to thank St Kilda Football Club for the opportunity, as well as Melbourne. I've thoroughly enjoyed my time at the club and feel lucky to have been a part of such a great culture," Dunstan said.
"I've met some amazing people over the journey and some lifelong friends. Thank you to everyone that has helped me along the way, I'm looking forward to the next chapter."