McPharlin set to play AFL game 200
Originally an East Fremantle boy, Luke McPharlin was recruited by Hawthorn as the 10th overall pick in the 1999 AFL Draft – a draft that saw the Fremantle Dockers select fellow Shark Paul Hasleby with the second pick and Matthew Pavlich with the fourth.
McPharlin debuted at Football Park in round 5, 2000, where he had just two disposals but kicked a goal in a big Hawthorn win.
After two injury interrupted seasons, which saw him manage 12 games with the Hawks, McPharlin was traded to Freo in the 2001 National Draft for picks 1, 20 and 36.
Back home at the port club, a 21-year-old McPharlin had to wait until round 12, 2002, to play his first game as a Freo Docker because of injury.
He had nine disposals and five marks in a memorable 11-point win over Collingwood.
After initially playing as a defender at Freo, McPharlin was swung into attack in 2005 and finished with 34 goals, including the Mark of the Year for a spectacular grab against the West Coast Eagles in round 3.
It was in 2011 that McPharlin enjoyed his finest season of AFL when he played as a permanent defender.
Standing the opposition’s best forward every week, he was rarely beaten and could be considered unlucky not to have won All-Australian selection.
McPharlin has continued that fine form in 2012, and this Saturday against Essendon at Patersons Stadium will line up for game 200 of a brilliant career.
The Freo great is also just 13 appearances away from becoming the sixth Freo Docker to play 200 games for the club.
The list currently sits as:
Matthew Pavlich – 267
Shane Parker – 238
Shaun McManus – 228
Paul Hasleby – 208
Antoni Grover – 201
Luke McPharlin – 187
A member of the club’s leadership group, McPharlin studies Pharmacy at Curtin, is the lead singer of his own band and has two children, Willow and Bronte, with his wife Kalinz.