Richmond skipper Trent Cotchin quits Tigers' AFL captaincy

Oliver Caffrey and Catherine HealeyThe West Australian
Trent Cotchin leads the Tigers out.
Camera IconTrent Cotchin leads the Tigers out. Credit: JASON O'BRIEN/AAPIMAGE

Three-time Richmond premiership skipper Trent Cotchin is standing down as Tigers captain.

Cotchin, who was just 22 when handed the reigns at Tigerland, is the club’s longest-serving captain with 188 of his 268 career games coming as the man in charge.

Teammate Jack Riewoldt said Cotchin told the senior players last week of his decision, before the main group and public were made aware on Tuesday night.

“The club has built a really strong leadership culture over the past five years and we have some excellent leaders at Richmond that will flourish in the captaincy role,” he said.

“It’s an awesome opportunity to continue our philosophy of pushing leadership deep through the organisation, and for me to continue to play a role both on-field and off-field.”

Cotchin, who will play on in 2022, led the club to its stunning 2017, 2019 and 2020 flags.

Trent Cotchin
Camera IconRichmond star Trent Cotchin is stepping down as captain of the AFL club. Credit: AAP

“He can be credited with the shift of the whole football club, along with the coach Damien Hardwick,” Riewoldt said on FoxFooty.

“He’s arguably the greatest captain of Richmond of all time, probably just behind ‘Captain Blood’ Jack Dyer.

“It’s a sad moment, but also a big moment in terms of the step forward and the net step forward for our club.

“We don’t lose him as a player... the door opens for someone to come in and fill really big shoes.”

Riewoldt, who has served as vice-captain, remains in the mix to replace Cotchin. Superstar Dustin Martin has been lauded for his leadership attributes by those at Punt Rd, but is notoriously media shy and would struggle with the off-field responsibilities of the role.

Richmond chief executive Brendon Gale thanked Cotchin for his contribution as leader of the club during a golden era.

“Trent has been a magnificent captain of this club over a long period of time - we have been blessed to have someone of his character in the role,” Gale said.

“He is such a selfless leader and this decision underlines that - he has always done what he thinks is best for the team.

“He will still be an enormously important part of our team moving forward and I know how driven he is to see this club bounce back in 2022.”

Richmond missed finals this year for the first time since 2016.

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