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Saint Sam hangs up the boots after 13 seasons

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 07: Sam Fisher of the Saints thanks fans during the 2016 AFL Round 20 match between the Carlton Blues and the St Kilda Saints at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on August 07, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media)
Sam Fisher has retired after 228 matches with St Kilda

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ST KILDA veteran Sam Fisher has retired after 228 games across 13 seasons with the Saints.

The versatile defender ends a decorated career that included two club champion awards, All Australian honours in 2008 and Grand Final appearances in 2009 and 2010.

Taken with pick No. 55 in the 2003 NAB AFL Draft, the 34-year-old said the time was right to move on to the next stage of his life.  

"I've thoroughly enjoyed my time playing for St Kilda Football Club and I can retire knowing that I have given my all over the past 13 years," Fisher said.

"While it will be different supporting from the sidelines, I'm looking forward to seeing my teammates and coaches enjoy well-deserved success in the years to come.

"I don't think anyone imagines they'll play over 200 games but I'm so grateful to have had this experience and would like to thank St Kilda Football Club and the fans for their support over the years."

Four Saints go marching out the door

Fisher made his name when the Saints were a regular finals team between 2006 and 2011, accumulating marks and possessions as a dangerous rebounding defender.

He averaged a career-high 23.1 possessions in 2008 when he won All Australian selection.

In the latter stages of his career, he has played as an undersized key defender, regular playing on some of the game's most dangerous key forwards.

Coach Alan Richardson said Fisher could be proud of his impact both on and off the field at St Kilda.

"Sam arrived at the club before a lot of us, myself included, but he will also leave a legacy that will extend past many of our times at the club," Richardson said.

"While Sam's honours as an All-Australian, Trevor Barker Award Winner and International Rules player highlight the impact he's had on the field he’s also taken the opportunity in the last few years to help and teach our young defenders.

"Sam's definitely made his mark on the club, we thank him for his remarkable service and wish him all the best for the future."

Hamstring injuries have restricted Fisher for the past three seasons, keeping him to 12 games in 2016.

He made his debut in round seven, 2004 and was awarded St Kilda life membership in 2014.