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Ryan Crowley

Last played for Essendon Bombers in 2016
Games: 196     Born: March 5, 1984     Origin: Calder Cannons
Playing Height: 188cm     Playing Weight: 89kg     Position: Midfield
First Drafted: Round 4, Pick #55 2002 National Draft by Fremantle Dockers
Last Drafted: Round 3, Pick #39 2004 Rookie Draft by Fremantle Dockers
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Ryan Crowley Biography

Monday, 29 February 2016
Ryan Crowley says he has offered advice to a handful of the 12 banned Essendon players, while acknowledging his own drug-based suspension was the hardest period of his life.

"I went to some real dark places," Crowley told Radio Sport National.

"It was a really, really lonely place. The footy club becomes your life and everyone there becomes your family and all of a sudden you're out on your own and you've got limited contact with the club.

"At the time I was hating every second of it and it was really difficult, but looking back now I learnt a lot about myself and the people that are close to me.

"In a strange way, I probably wouldn't change it now because I feel like I've grown as a person because of it and hopefully we can do some good things this year."

Friday, 12 February 2016
Essendon coach John Worsfold says he sees Ryan Crowley as more than just a run-with player.

"Crowls has developed a big reputation as a tagger, but he was recruited as a midfielder," Worsfold said.

"He can definitely worry teams when forward. We won't use Crowley in purely that (tagging) kind of role."

Wednesday, 20 January 2016
Ryan Crowley says he is determined to make the most of his second chance at AFL football after being selected as Essendon's first top-up player.

"My body is feeling great and my mind is right. I am as eager as I have ever been," Crowley said.

"I was craving this chance and now I have got it I am not going to let it slip."

He said the fact that he had been found guilty of an anti-doping violation was not an issue for the Bombers or something he considered should rule him out of consideration.

"For me it was quite a lonely place because it was only me going through it," Crowley said.

"I am not going to hide it. I went through some dark times. It was really, really tough, but they will be able to lean on each other, work together and they will come back."

Tuesday, 19 January 2016
Former Fremantle tagger Ryan Crowley has been locked in as Essendon's first top-up player.

The ex-Docker, delisted at the end of last season after 188 games, has signed a temporary contract to play in red and black for the 2016 campaign.

"I didn't hide the fact that I really wanted to continue my AFL career at the end of last season. It didn't happen with Fremantle but I couldn't be more excited to be down at Essendon," Crowley said.

"Hopefully I can bring a lot of experience, a bit of hardness and maybe just a bit of protection for some of the young players."

Monday, 9 November 2015
Ryan Crowley is set to join Swan Districts in the WAFL next season if an AFL club does not recruit him as a delisted free agent or in the NAB AFL Draft.

Swan Districts football manager Phil Smart, who had a previous relationship with Crowley as Fremantle's long-time recruiting manager, said that the club was fully supportive of Crowley's desire to get another opportunity at AFL level.

"Ryan's priority at the moment is to get an opportunity back at AFL level," Smart said.

"Our deal is just subject to anything that may not happen at AFL level."

Saturday, 17 October 2015
Ryan Crowley says he was completely blindsided by his delisting from the Dockers.

"I felt a bit like the deer in the headlights," Crowley said on Perth radio station 6PR.

"They said 'look mate, we're not looking to go with you next year, we're looking to go in a different direction'.

"I respect that, I might not agree with it, but I respect that.

"I just wouldn't have minded a bit of warning beforehand. I haven't missed a training session all year, so they've had plenty of time to come up and have a chat I felt. I was a bit disappointed with that."

Sunday, 11 October 2015
Ryan Crowley is a no-show at Fremantle's best and fairest count just two days after being delisted by the club.

Despite his absence, Crowley was honoured on the night along with retirees Luke McPharlin and Paul Duffield.

Thursday, 8 October 2015
Ryan Crowley is delisted by the Dockers.

"Ryan became the competition's premier tagger and has been a popular player around the club and with fans," Fremantle general manager of football operations Chris Bond said.

"He left nothing out on the ground during his 188 games for Fremantle."

Monday, 28 September 2015
Garrick Ibbotson says he is confident Dockers teammate Ryan Crowley can play a key role for the club next year if he's not forced into retirement.

"I know he will definitely have the ticker to do it," Ibbotson said.

"He did so much work to get back into the team, and is a real fit guy anyway and loves exercising.

"He didn't get the opportunity at the end of this season, and if he does get the opportunity next season he'll do everything he can."

Tuesday, 28 July 2015
Ryan Crowley returns to Dockers training for the first time since his backdated 12-month suspension for a doping violation was handed down in June.

"It was a pretty strange feeling, I felt like I was 18 again," Crowley said.

"I was pretty nervous last night, (like) it was my first day.

"It's been great, the boys have been great and getting around me.

"It's good to have interaction with the boys and be around here because it's a great place to be."

Tuesday, 16 June 2015
Fremantle coach Ross Lyon has not ruled out the possibility of tagger Ryan Crowley playing again this season.

Crowley is able to resume training with the Dockers two months before his sanction ends.

"If that was the commitment, if Ryan said: 'I'll commit to train, keep fit, come back (then a return is possible)," Lyon told Fox Footy.

"Until you're in finals you can't make any decisions; if we get to that stage we'll consider it, but potentially it could happen.

"We'll all come back together and look at the immediate future with the view to make a decision for Ryan to do the training and come back two months out."

Thursday, 11 June 2015
Ryan crowley's future is in the air after the AFL handed the tagger a 12-month suspension for breaching the anti-doping code.

The sanction is backdated to September 25 last year the day he accepted a voluntary suspension - meaning he could play in the last two weeks of finals.

However, with Crowley only able to resume training with the club two months before the suspension ends, that outcome seems unlikely.

ASADA appears unlikely to appeal the ban, with CEO Ben McDevitt saying in a statement: "We note the AFL Anti-Doping Tribunal found Mr Crowley did not intend to violate the World Anti-Doping Code."

"This case illustrates the dangers of inadvertent doping. Athletes need to be careful about what they take, even if they don't intend to cheat."

Fremantle has not guaranteed Ryan Crowley a spot on the club's list in 2016 despite the player desperate to return to AFL ranks.

Fremantle's CEO Steve Rosich said the club would review its list at the end of the season as part of the normal list management protocols.

Rosich also confirmed that Crowley had met all of the legal costs personally and the club was not imposing any additional penalty.

"There's lots that needs to play out for that to be even considered so that's something we'll just weigh up down the track," Rosich said.

"We stated in the press release we'll sit down in due course at the end of the season and review as part of our normal list management protocol the status of Ryan post this season."

Crowley said he has not made a decision on his future but he stated he would continue to train away from the club in a bid to be available to play again.

"This is obviously pretty raw," Crowley said.

"I wasn't sure what the outcome was going to be. So I've got some thinking to do. I'll just make sure I'm fit and we'll make that decision at the end of the year."

Monday, 18 May 2015
The hearing into Ryan Crowley's doping allegations has concluded, but the star Fremantle tagger will probably have to wait several weeks before finding out his fate.

Crowley fronted the AFL's Anti-Doping Tribunal on Monday after testing positive to a "specified" banned substance last year.

"It was good to have my say, but I can't really talk too much about it," Crowley told the Seven Network.

Tuesday, 28 April 2015
Ryan Crowley's AFL Anti-Doping Tribunal hearing is rescheduled for May 18 after the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority requested more time to prepare.
Friday, 27 March 2015
Ryan Crowley will not face the AFL Anti-Doping Tribunal until May, ruling him out for at least the first month of the season.
Friday, 20 March 2015
Fremantle coach Ross Lyon says he still doesn't know why Ryan Crowley ignored club protocols to obtain a painkiller from an outside source.

"I still haven't sat down and said to Ryan, 'What occurred?' Let's be really clear on that, because it's none of my business and I can't do anything about it," Lyon said.

"All I say (to Crowley) is we're supportive. We'll support you until we can't as a club, and I get on with business."

Lyon said Crowley was doing his best to keep his spirits high.

"It's very hard to sit on significant matters that affect your professional life for a long period of time," Lyon said.

"There's an element of relief (that it's now public). He seems pretty bubbly, buying into team meetings."

Thursday, 19 March 2015
Fremantle skipper Matthew Pavlich says Ryan Crowley is stressed and anxious as he waits to find out when his AFL Anti-Doping Tribunal hearing will be, but he's also relieved his positive drugs test is no longer a secret.

"He's probably somewhat relieved that it's now been made public. He's spoken to the players and he's able to move forward. It's an incredibly difficult time for him and everyone at the club is supporting him through it," Pavlich said.

"I've only spoken briefly to Ryan, and that was to offer my support and the club's support. He was dealing with it reasonably well. He's obviously had it at hand for quite some time.

"He's been speaking with lawyers and the committee here at the club. He's in a reasonable position.

"But clearly it's been a stressful and highly anxious time for him, and it will remain that way until the hearing date is set and the hearing has transpired."

Monday, 16 March 2015
Ryan Crowley has been issued a show-cause notice and is serving a provisional suspension after testing positive to a banned substance on a match-day last season.

Crowley is awaiting a hearing to appear at the AFL Tribunal after testing positive to the substance, which was contained in a painkiller that the Dockers said they had not prescribed.

CEO Steve Rosich said the 31-year-old was acting outside the club's normal process by taking the painkiller.

Crowley's positive sample was taken after Fremantle's round 17 clash against Greater Western Sydney on July 13.

According to a timeline released by the AFL, that sample wasn't tested until August 11. Crowley was notified of a positive 'A' sample result for a 'specified' substance on August 18.

His 'B' sample was tested on September 11 and he received a show-cause notice on September 18 - five days after Fremantle's last game of the 2014 season.

Under the AFL Anti-Doping Code, a player who tests positive to a specified substance may, if they choose, continue to play and train as normal until the result of an Anti-Doping Tribunal.

Crowley kept playing until the end of the season and accepted a provisional suspension, which started on September 25 last year.

The testing of Crowley's 'B' sample was the reason for the delay in issuing the infraction. Crowley himself wasn't formally notified he had tested positive until September, after the Dockers' season had ended at the hands of Port Adelaide.

Rosich said the AFL first informed him that there was an issue with Crowley's sample in late August. Fremantle's risk integrity committee, which includes Dockers president Steve Harris, was informed of the issue on September 25 but Crowley's identity was not revealed until last week.

"I knew the player's name when I was first contacted by the AFL," Rosich said.

"The risk committee was made aware of the matter, including Steve Harris, who sits on that committee, on the 25th of September, but not the player's name.

"The risk committee was only made aware of the player's identity last week and the full board fully informed of the matter, including the player's name, this morning."

The Fremantle player leadership group was informed on Monday morning and Rosich said the full playing group would be addressed upon their return to the club on Tuesday. Rosich said Crowley would likely address the playing group himself.

The 2012 club champion has appointed independent legal advisers and is cooperating fully with the AFL and ASADA, according to the Dockers.

Crowley, who had mysteriously been ruled out of selection by coach Ross Lyon last week, read a statement at a press conference on Monday afternoon.

"I would like to thank my partner Samara, my family and the club for their support over the past few months. It has been invaluable," Crowley said.

"I have my own legal advisers working on the matter and they have also been a great support.

"I will continue to fully cooperate on this matter with ASADA and the AFL. At this stage, I'm looking forward to the AFL Tribunal hearing taking place."

Rosich said Crowley would meet the full costs of his legal defence and the club would merely have a supportive presence at the hearing when it takes place.

Fremantle president Steve Harris said the club had not commented on Crowley's ban because of confidentiality clauses in the AFL Anti-Doping Code.

"We are keen for the matter to go to the AFL Tribunal but determining a date for a hearing is out of the club's control," Harris said on the club's website.

"We have a continuing and ongoing duty of care for Ryan, both personally and professionally.

"Ryan's ongoing health and capacity to cope with this matter have been key areas of focus for the support we have been providing him with."

AFL general counsel Andrew Dillon said on Monday the League had issued an infraction notice against Crowley under its Anti-Doping Code.

Leading sports doctor Peter Larkins suspects that Ryan Crowley most likely took a narcotic-based painkiller.

"When you're dealing with reasonable pain in everyday life, narcotic-based painkillers are used pretty commonly. Every day doctors would be prescribing a pain-relief tablet for high-strength pain and anyone who leaves hospital after a shoulder reconstruction or a knee reconstruction could be on such medication for a week," Larkins said.

"They are not performance-enhancing drugs but they're banned on the basis that if you're trying to mask pain to play sport the WADA rules have said that it's not healthy to mask pain of that severity."

Friday, 13 March 2015
Fremantle coach Ross Lyon has failed to shed light on the mystery surrounding Ryan Crowley, apart from saying his star tagger "is working through issues".

Lyon also revealed Crowley was not available for selection but would not comment any further.

Crowley was not named in the Dockers' 29-man squad to face the Sydney Swans on Sunday after failing to play in the Dockers' first NAB Challenge clash against Melbourne.

The 31-year-old ran laps at training on Wednesday and did so again on Friday, but there has been no suggestion of an injury.

Lyon simply reiterated that he is not available for selection despite training.

"I'm not in a position to comment really except to reiterate the club's statement that he's working through an issue that doesn't see him available to play at the minute," Lyon said.

"We're really supportive but I'm not in a position to comment any further."

Thursday, 12 March 2015
Fremantle has confirmed Ryan Crowley is 'dealing with some issues' and is not available for selection this weekend for the Dockers' NAB Challenge clash against the Swans.

Earlier on Thursday teammate Garrick Ibbotson could shed no light on Crowley's situation, saying: "I'm not entirely sure where he's at.

"But he has been doing a lot of laps, and he is a proven player for us and a really fit guy.

"So it won't take him long to get up to speed. I'm not 100 per cent sure what's wrong with him. But he's looking OK running wise, so I don't think he'll be too far away."

Tuesday, 2 September 2014
Kieren Jack says he'd be delighted to again cop a Ryan Crowley tag when the Swans take on the Dockers in their qualifying final at ANZ Stadium.

"Oh yeah, (I'll take) any chance to go at him and try to beat him," Jack said.

"He's a niggly sort of player and he tries to get under your skin a fair bit, like a few of their players, but you can't be distracted by it and can't let it get yourself off your own game."

Sunday, 29 June 2014
Brent Macaffer says he has modeled his tagging game closely to Docker Ryan Crowley.

"He's the No.1 guy for the past seven or eight years," Macaffer said.

"I think most guys who are tagging now would be stupid not to look at him and see why he's been so successful.

"It's his mental application and his discipline to his role. That's something I've taken out of the way he plays."

Tuesday, 10 December 2013
Ryan Crowley and Lachie Neale sign contract extensions with Fremantle to remain at the club beyond 2014.

"Ryan is a really integral part of our playing group," general manager of player management Brad Lloyd said.

"Lachie has done a great job since joining the club. He has applied himself to his football and has made the most of his senior opportunities over the last couple of years."

Monday, 23 September 2013
Shaun Burgoyne says the Hawks are expecting Fremantle tagger Ryan Crowley to focus plenty of attention on teammate Sam Mitchell in their Grand Final encounter.

"That's just [Crowley's] game. He's made a career of tagging players and he's been very good at it," Burgoyne said.

"Mitch is pretty accustomed to those tactics, he's been tagged his entire career so I have no doubt he'll deal with it very well if it comes his way.

"It's just up to us guys to help him out and I have no doubt he'll have an influence on our game as well."

Thursday, 5 September 2013
Ross Lyon says tagger Ryan Crowley is being targeted unfairly by opposition players off the ball in an attempt to break the tag off their best player.

Lyon says he hopes to get assistance from the umpires to deal with this.

"He'll get physically targeted on and off the ball," Lyon said.

"I just think he should get the protection afforded to every player on the ground. We all just want equality and fairness and I'm sure that's the way the umpires treat it.

"I'd be shocked, absolutely shocked if umpires treated any player on an AFL field any differently, whether they were a full-back, full-forward or a strongly-accountable midfielder."

Tuesday, 9 July 2013
Stephen Hill says he has been receiving advice from teammate Ryan Crowley on how to beat taggers.

"It's not what they will do. He's just given me advice on how to beat them," Hill said.

"Just finding out about things that opponents do that he finds hard. Things like getting lots of blocks from other teammates.

"So I try to get teammates to help me out and also just doing little things like running around and finding space, finding my own footy."

Sunday, 30 June 2013
After a fiery clash with Ryan Crowley, Joel Selwood ends up with three stitches below his right eye but remains complimentary towards the Fremantle tagger's efforts to restrict his output.

"He's pretty tough," Selwood said after the match.

"I really respect him as a tagger. He goes about it the right way, I think."

Thursday, 27 June 2013
North Melbourne coach Brad Scott says Brent Harvey deserves better protection from the umpires as the current rules prevent him from protecting himself.

"If that was 30 years ago and he was subjected to what he was subjected to on the weekend, he would have just dropped Ryan Crowley," Scott said.

"But he did that in the final over there in Perth last year and got six weeks.

"Boomer would prefer that 30 years ago he could react like he did in the final last year, but we're not prepared to have him sitting on the sidelines for six weeks.

"The player's either got to be defended by the umpire or he's got to have the right to defend himself."

Wednesday, 26 June 2013
Despite having his case dismissed by the AFL Tribunal and fined $1200, Ryan Crowley continues to insist he did not pinch Brent Harvey.

"I just want to reiterate my statement to the Tribunal hearing, where I am bound to tell the truth, that I never intentionally, accidentally or in any way pinched Brent Harvey at any stage throughout the game," Crowley said.

Tuesday, 25 June 2013
Fremantle coach Ross Lyon defends Ryan Crowley after the tagger was charged and fined for pinching Brent Harvey.

"He's disappointed with what's been asserted," Lyon said about Crowley's reaction to the charge.

"I back Ryan 100 per cent. If Ryan was out there pinching players I would have a problem with it internally.

"We can make light of it but it's a serious assertion and a disappointing one."

Ryan Crowley will contest the pinching charge handed against him by the match review panel.
Ryan Crowley's misconduct charge for pinching is upheld by the Tribunal after Brent Harvey provides evidence at the hearing, claiming he was pinched "about 300 times".
Monday, 24 June 2013
Docker Ryan Crowley has been charged with pinching North Melbourne veteran Brent Harvey during their clash at Patersons Stadium.

Crowley was charged after a Match Review Panel Investigation and has been offered a $900 fine for entering an early guilty plea.

If he elects to contest the charge and is found guilty, his fine will be increased to $1200.

North Melbourne coach Brad Scott said both players had a good contest while on the field.

"Boomer has played 350-plus games. I reckon he might have got away with 20 games at the start of his career, maybe 10, when he wasn't subjected to that sort of defensive pressure, but he's had it for his whole career so it's nothing new," Scott said.

"The majority of his career he has won those battles. Today, Crowley was very good for Fremantle."

Thursday, 20 December 2012
Ryan Crowley has torn his pectoral muscle and will miss six weeks of pre-season training.
Sunday, 7 October 2012
Fremantle midfielder Ryan Crowley has capped a stunning revival by taking out his first club champion award with 146 votes.

"My career at Fremantle was almost definitely over," an emotional Crowley said.

"The club was looking for a trade and if not it was 50-50 at that point.

"Ross (Lyon) came in and we had a pretty frank and honest discussion about where I was at and he gave me great confidence.

"He told me if you do the work and get your body right, I know there's a place for you I can't speak highly enough of Ross and everything he's done."

Chris Mayne was second with 142 votes.

Thursday, 23 August 2012
After a massive off-season and impressive 2012, Freo's Ryan Crowley has accepted a new two-year deal.

"Ryan has had really solid season so far and we are very pleased that, on the back of that, he has committed to the club for a further two years," Fremantle general manager of player management Brad Lloyd said.

"He's a highly regarded member of the playing group and integral to our aim of achieving sustained success."

Wednesday, 22 August 2012
Luke McPharlin praises teammate Ryan Crowley on his shutdown efforts this year.

"He's been outstanding. He's done a lot of great jobs for us this year and it's an absolute credit to him, given where he was at 12 months ago," McPharlin said.

"The opportunity Ross (Lyon) has given him this year, he's really grabbed onto that and delivered the majority of the year. It's been excellent."

Tuesday, 5 June 2012
MRP chairman Mark Fraser says Ryan Crowley was clearly staging for a free kick against Scott Thompson during Fremantle's match against Adelaide.

"It's different to the Crowley one where the ball wasn't in the area at all and we thought that was more unsportsmanlike," he said.

"I think it's pretty clear cut. Excessive exaggeration that is potentially going to potentially influence the umpire's decision or potentially cause a melee and is unsportsmanlike in nature are fairly clear cut."

Saturday, 2 June 2012
Ryan Crowley says his career might have been over if not for new coach Ross Lyon.

"Ross came in and gave the perception of me from the outside - he gave me great confidence because he said I was someone he wanted around the club," Crowley said.

"He saw a role for me in the team straight away and he said if you go away and do the work you'll get first crack at the role."

Thursday, 14 April 2011
Fremantle forward Ryan Crowley reflects on his circuitous route to 100 AFL matches.

"I obviously got delisted after my first two years at the club, so at that stage it felt like a long way off," Crowley said.

"It was a pretty rocky road [and] it's been a bit different to other guys that have got there. I suppose there's times when you wonder if you're going to get there. I'm pretty proud to make 100 games and hopefully there's a few more to go."

Monday, 16 November 2009
Fremantle tagger Ryan Crowley has put a serious foot injury behind him to lead his teammates in their pre-season time trials.

"Probably the last month I've been fully up and going, I've been able to go at 100 per cent. It's been slow increments over the last couple of months," Crowley said.

"The foot's fantastic. I couldn't be more happy with it."

Tuesday, 1 September 2009
Fremantle has re-signed Rhys Palmer, Dean Solomon, Kepler Bradley, Tim Ruffles and Ryan Crowley.

"Rhys is the reigning NAB AFL Rising Star and an important part of our long-term future. We are delighted that he has committed to Fremantle through to the end of 2011," General manager of player management Brad Lloyd said.

"Following his surgery earlier in the season, Rhys has been working very diligently on his rehabilitation and we are really looking forward to having him back out on the field next season."

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