Nic Naitanui, Lance Franklin and Trent Cotchin. Pictures: AFL Photos

EIGHT premiership players, six club captains and a Brownlow Medal winner make up our Retired Best 22 for the 2023 season.

Headlined by one of the greatest players the game has ever seen, Lance Franklin, has assembled a star-studded 22 of players who farewelled the game this year.

WHOS CALLED IT QUITS 2023’s retirements and delistings

The team features a total of 19 All-Australian blazers, seven Coleman Medals, two Norm Smith Medals and the Brownlow won by Trent Cotchin in 2012. 

Franklin leads the forward line alongside triple-premiership Tiger Jack Riewoldt, Shannon Hurn and Daniel Rich provide plenty of momentum from the half-back line while Nic Naitanui, Cotchin, Luke Shuey and Ben Cunnington will handle the centre bounces with Isaac Smith and Paul Seedsman on the wings.

The team includes a total of 4641 games at AFL level, an average of 211 per player, and includes 12 players who played more than 200 games (the trio at full-back – Michael Hibberd, Phil Davis and Robbie Tarrant – all finished their careers on between 190 and 200 games).

Lance Franklin and family during the round 24 match between Sydney and Melbourne at the SCG, August 27, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

B: Michael Hibberd, Phil Davis, Robbie Tarrant
HB: Shannon Hurn, Tom Jonas, Daniel Rich
C: Isaac Smith, Luke Shuey, Paul Seedsman
HF: Jack Ziebell, Lance Franklin, Jason Castagna
F: Josh Bruce, Jack Riewoldt, Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti
Foll: Nic Naitanui, Trent Cotchin, Ben Cunnington
I/C: Tom Hickey, Ed Curnow, Marcus Adams, Paddy McCartin


Michael Hibberd (Essendon, Melbourne)
Premiership player (2021), All-Australian (2017), 197 games

Phil Davis (Adelaide, Greater Western Sydney)
GWS co-captain, 192 games

Phil Davis shakes hands with Callan Ward after announcing his retirement on August 21, 2023. Picture: Phil Hillyard

Robbie Tarrant (North Melbourne, Richmond)
B&F winner (2016), 194 games


Shannon Hurn (West Coast)
Premiership player (2018), All-Australian (2018, 2019), West Coast captain, AFLCA best captain (2019), 333 games

Tom Jonas (Port Adelaide)
Port Adelaide captain, 215 games

Daniel Rich (Brisbane)
All-Australian (2021), Ron Evans Medal - AFL Rising Star (2009), 275 games

Daniel Rich and Stefan Martin in a Toyota HiLux during the 2023 Grand Final. Picture: AFL Photos


Isaac Smith (Hawthorn, Geelong)
Premiership player (2013, 2014, 2015, 2022), Norm Smith Medal (2022), 280 games

Luke Shuey (West Coast)
Premiership player (2018), Norm Smith Medal (2018), B&F winner (2016, 2019), West Coast captain, 248 games

Paul Seedsman (Collingwood, Adelaide)
132 games


Jack Ziebell (North Melbourne)
North Melbourne captain, 280 games

Lance Franklin (Hawthorn, Sydney)
Premiership player (2008, 2013), All-Australian (2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018), All-Australian captain (2018), Coleman Medal (2008, 2011, 2014, 2017), B&F winner (2008), 354 games


Jason Castagna (Richmond)
Premiership player (2017, 2019, 2020), 134 games


Josh Bruce (Greater Western Sydney, St Kilda, Western Bulldogs)
163 games

Jack Riewoldt (Richmond)
Premiership player (2017, 2019, 2020), All-Australian (2010, 2015, 2018), Coleman Medal (2010, 2012, 2018), B&F winner (2010, 2018), 347 games

Jack Riewoldt completes a lap of honour after his final game during the R23 match between Richmond and North Melbourne at the MCG on August 19, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

Anthony McDonald-Tipungwuti (Essendon)
133 games


Nic Naitanui (West Coast)
All-Australian (2012, 2020, 2021), B&F winner (2020, 2021), 213 games

Trent Cotchin (Richmond)
Premiership captain (2017, 2019, 2020), Brownlow Medal (2012), AFLCA Champion Player (2012), All-Australian (2012), AFLPA best captain (2018), B&F winner (2011, 2012, 2014), Richmond captain, 306 games

Ben Cunnington (North Melbourne)
B&F winner (2014, 2019), 238 games



Tom Hickey (Gold Coast, St Kilda, West Coast, Sydney)
150 games

Ed Curnow (Adelaide, Carlton)
221 games

Marcus Adams (Western Bulldogs, Brisbane)
73 games

Paddy McCartin (St Kilda, Sydney)
63 games