Gary Ablett: 'I don't know what 2018 holds for me'
GARY Ablett has sensationally said 2017 could be his last year of AFL football, failing to commit to seeing out his contract with the Gold Coast.
Ablett is contracted to the Suns until the end of 2018 but blindsided the club when he requested a trade back to Geelong at the end of last year.
However, Ablett said on Thursday night he may not play football at all beyond this season and he confirmed he would seek talks with the Suns again at the end of the season.
"This may be my last season," he said.
"I've got some things going on in my life that, you know, I'm not going to elaborate on, but they are my No.1 priority at the moment.
"I'm super committed to this year. I'm going to give it everything. But I don't know what 2018 holds for me.
"I will sit down with the club at the end of the year, we will talk through that and I will work out the next step for me."
As reported by the Herald Sun on Tuesday, Ablett has a strong desire to finish his career with the Cats, where he won two premierships and the first of his two Brownlow Medals. Geelong officials are open to having him back.
After captaining the Suns for six years, Ablett stepped down from all leadership positions at the club in the off-season.
Following a strong performance in round one, his body language and demeanour were heavily criticised in the club's 102-point round two loss to Greater Western Sydney.
However, Ablett defended his actions and rejected suggestions he had mentally checked out. He insisted he was happy at the Suns.
"I mean, when you hear anyone speaking about you like that ... I would be lying to say that it didn't hurt," he told Channel Nine.
"I felt I was pretty honest at the end of last season with the football club and with the media on the reasons behind why I asked for a trade back to Geelong (unspecified family issues).
"I go out there every week, I'm a super competitive guy and I don't like to lose. So I'm sure you know, if you were to look at footage of any team that loses by 100 points, you will find footage of guys with their head down because you know, we're competitive as footballers and we want to win games."
When asked to elaborate on the personal issues which led to his initial trade request, Ablett said: "It's hard to continue to talk about these things. Obviously I'm not going to elaborate with what's going on in my life because I don't think that would be fair ... to those certain individuals."