NORWOOD small forward Ed Smart last Thursday made the decision to retire, calling time on his 100-game SANFL career.
Originally from the Onkaparinga Valley Football Club in the Hills, Smart made his way to Woods Street in the Under-16s in 2009.
Smart, then went off to playschool football for two years, however, played intermediately for the Under 18s under then Coach, David Oatey.
After returning from school football in 2011, Nathan Bassett presented Smart the opportunity to play in the Reserves Grand Final and then made his League debut the year after in Round Nine against the Double Blues at Unley.
The 26-year old played seven years of League Football, winning flags in 2012 and 2014.
Smart’s on and off-field leadership saw him recognised as the Best Team Man of 2018 taking home the Garry McIntosh Medal.
Smart finishes his career playing 100 Games, winning two Premierships and kicking 50 League goals.
Smart said he is comfortable with his decision and said he certainly tried to get the best out himself everyday he stepped into the club.
“I am content with my decision to leave the game having played 13-years at the Norwood Football Club,” Smart said.
“It was an absolute pleasure and I have loved every minute of it.”
“I think that I certainly tried to get the best out of myself every single day, no matter if it was training or a game,”
“I did that for eight years and leave the game content.”
Smart says his favourite memories from his career at the Parade was the two Premiership wins and pays importance to the 2014 Flag against a red-hot Port Adelaide outfit.
“I definitely can’t go past the 2012 and 2014 Premiership wins,” Smart said.
“Winning the first one was pretty special, especially when that final siren went and breaking down as a 19-year old kid hugging Bass (Nathan Bassett), that was a pretty fond memory.
“The second Premiership, I will never forget just watching that ball come inside 50 and hearing that siren go and just feeling pure elation.
“I’ll never forget hugging Alex Forster on the ground for a solid 45 seconds, it was extremely emotional.”
Since announcing his retirement, Smart said he will miss the professional environment that Norwood provides and the group of people including teammates and staff.
“I’ll certainly the professional environment that Norwood has provided me,” Smart said.
“Mostly, I’ll miss the group of people that you get to play footy with and the group of people that support and run the club.
“I am grateful for meeting a lot of long-life friends and will miss all of them.”
Norwood Football Operations Manager Mark Ross said the Club wished Smart all the best in retirement.
“To play 100 games across eight seasons in the SANFL is something Ed should be incredibly proud of,” Ross said.
“We would like to congratulate Ed on his career and wish him all the best as he enters the next stage of his life.”
“He will always be part of the Norwood family and we wish him and partner Meg, all the best for the future.”