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Chris Scott finishes the game


After a long fight with injuries that limited him to just 27 games in four seasons, Brisbane Lions defender Chris Scott has retired.

The 214-game former vice-captain announced he will give it away at season's end, but last Saturday night's first senior game this season is also likely to be his swan song.

The loss to Adelaide ended nearly two years out of the game through injury, but Scott's chances of selection for the must-win home match against Geelong on Saturday night are slim.

Brisbane are set to regain Jason Roe, Josh Drummond and Joel MacDonald.

Scott might return to the senior side if the Lions make the finals, which is unlikely.

Fronting a Gabba media conference alongside coach Leigh Matthews, the 31-year-old spoke candidly about a frustrating end to an impressive career.

"To be honest, I'm disappointed that I never became the player that I thought I could become after 2002," Scott said.

"Realistically, my career started going downhill as an individual."

Scott battled through 19 games in 2003 with a chronic osteitis pubis problem, which then held him to just 13 games in 2004.

A hip complaint again limited Scott to 13 games in 2005, before surgery in the 2006 pre-season failed to cure the problem.

It kept him out of AFL until last Saturday's 26-point loss to Adelaide.

"It is that long since Chris was really 100 per cent, or anywhere near 100 per cent," Matthews said.

"Basically for a couple of years, getting through a training session was going to be an achievement, let alone playing."

Scott's return to the Lions senior squad has proved an inspiration for many of Brisbane's youngsters this year.

For Scott himself, it has simply been an effort to "finish the job".

"When (my girlfriend) was looking at me trying to roll out of bed and I couldn't walk in the morning, she was saying, 'What the hell are you doing? Why are you putting yourself through this?'" Scott said.

"I used (a quote) from (the film) Young Guns.

"I kept saying `I shall finish the game', and that's what I was determined to do.

"And if I hadn't got back to playing, even at reserves level, I'd still be here at training today because I was determined to finish the job."

Scott's determination to overcome his injury problems has been no surprise.

He and twin brother Brad, who retired last season, were two of the most feared players in the league and key members of the strong Brisbane teams at the start of this decade.

A bruising defender, Chris made his debut for the then-Brisbane Bears in 1994 and quickly made an impression, winning that year's AFL Rising Star award.

He was named the Lions' best and fairest in 1998, the year Brisbane collected the wooden spoon.

Those hard years in a rugby league-mad city paid off in 2001 and 2002 when the two Scotts played in premierships.

"It's been a fantastic journey," he said.

"You go back to 1993 when I first came to Brisbane and I never expected that I'd still be here in 2007.

"It's a completely different world to the one in which AFL lives in Brisbane now, and when I look back that's the thing that I'm probably proud of the most, that I was able to come to a club ... and play a really small part in the evolution of football in Queensland."

He and Brad missed the 2003 premiership team.

Matthews said it was the spirit and commitment of three youngsters who travelled north from Melbourne in the 1990s - Justin Leppitsch, Nigel Lappin and Chris - on which the Lions are now based.

"The young boys who came up as boys from the southern states, I'm sure they got homesick and I'm sure they felt like they were out of the heartland of footy, but they had the character to stick it out," Matthews said.

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