From the Port Melbourne Football Club website:
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The Port Melbourne Football Club is disappointed to confirm the recent news of 2011 Premiership star Nathan Batsanis announcing his retirement from the VFL, effective immediately.
Batsanis, 29, had played a total of 112 Senior VFL games at both Richmond and the Borough, including a starring role in our historic 2011 Grand Final victory.
He played his first game for Port Melbourne against North Ballarat in 2009, and went on to boot 46 goals across his 85 Senior matches in the red and blue, playing predominantly as a running winger / half-forward flanker.
‘Batsi’ entered season 2017 with a determination to put aside the injury setbacks that saw him play just four Senior games last year.
Ultimately, however, he was to be cruelly struck down once again by a persistent knee issue following his sole club game in the Development League against the Northern Blues in Round 1.
An emotional Batsanis explained that recent scans indicated that he had been suffering from a torn meniscus, which resulted in a “bone-on-bone” effect within his knee and subsequently limited training at full capacity.
In addition, a recent increase in work commitments had also meant an inability for Batsanis to maintain his status as one of the premier midfielders of the VFL.
“To play in this (VFL) competition against AFL-listed players most weeks, you need to be able to present yourself in the best manner possible and unfortunately, I just haven’t been able to do that recently,” he said.
Batsanis said that it was a decision he hadn’t taken lightly, and he fronted the entire playing group to relay the news on to them before training last Monday night.
“I told the boys before training, and that was hard because the mateship is probably what I’ll miss the most about playing footy – particularly with guys like Toby (Pinwill), Sam (Dwyer) and Chris (Cain) who have been around the club since I started,” he said.
“That (mateship), as well as the feeling you get running down the race at North Port Oval in a Final – I’ll really miss that.”
He said that he would always remember his time at the club fondly, with the obvious highlight from his career being the undefeated 2011 Premiership season (pictured, below).
“Yeah, it’s very hard to go past the Premiership,” he was quick to answer upon being quizzed for a specific highlight of his time.
Batsanis said that his decision to retire was made even tougher with the club thus far in with “every chance to go close (to the Premiership) again” in season 2017.
He said that would remain in close contact with most of the playing group for the remainder of the year and provide them with any amount of support or advice that they might need.
On behalf of the entire club, we would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge and congratulate Nathan on a wonderful VFL career, and wish him all the very best in his future endeavours.
Image credits: Jenny Tserkezidis, Zimbio.