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Grant Birchall

Last played for Brisbane Lions in 2020
Games: 287     Born: January 28, 1988     Origin: Devonport
Playing Height: 193cm     Playing Weight: 89kg     Position: Defender
Last Drafted: Round 1, Pick #15 2020 Rookie Draft by Brisbane Lions
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Grant Birchall Biography

Friday, 10 September 2021
Grant Birchall retires from AFL football after a decorated 17-season career.

"I just feel so fortunate to have such amazing people around me during that time, fantastic coaches and players and it's been unbelievable," Birchall said.

"I wouldn't have thought I'd be a four-time premiership player in my wildest dreams. It's been a fair old journey."

Wednesday, 25 November 2020
The Lions temporarily delist Grant Birchall, Connor Ballenden and Rhys Mathieson from the senior list. The trio will be added to the rookie list for 2021.
Wednesday, 4 December 2019
Ravaged by injury over the past three years, Grant Birchall hopes his move to Brisbane will revive his AFL career.

"I'll help along the way with leadership but my priority is playing and I will let my actions do the talking," Birchall said.

"It has been a real grind being in rehab and I thought a fresh, new environment would do me the world of good. And Brisbane have a good track record of getting their players out on the park."

Monday, 25 November 2019
Grant Birchall starts life as a Lion, jogging laps at Brisbane's Yeronga training facility.

"It's been a pretty tough few years with my body, so I thought a fresh start up here would do me the world of good. I'm sure the body will appreciate the warmer weather," Birchall said.

"I feel as though I can still play at the level. I think I proved that with the couple of games I played last year. I just need to get the work in and have full faith in the guys here."

Thursday, 10 October 2019
Grant Birchall joins Brisbane as an unrestricted free agent for 2020 in a move that will bring an end to his illustrious 248-game career with Hawthorn.

Hawthorn will receive no compensation for losing Birchall.

"It happened reasonably quickly. I'm excited to start something a bit different and get up there," Birchall said.

Monday, 7 October 2019
Grant Birchall's playing future remains unknown, with a decision set to drag out until at least next week.

Hawthorn was already going to wait until after the Telstra AFL Trade Period deadline passes before making a call on whether to retain Birchall.

Several clubs – not just Brisbane – are understood to be considering signing the unrestricted free agent, but none of them have made him a priority at this stage.

Tuesday, 6 August 2019
Grant Birchall is unlikely to play again in 2019 after suffering a hamstring setback.

Birchall's wretched run across the past three seasons has largely owed to persistent issues related to a posterior cruciate ligament, but he's now suffering from regular soft-tissue problems.

"It was just a standard hamstring injury. It's not great timing, obviously being at the end of the year," Hawks physical performance manager Luke Boyd said.

"But we've been really happy with how Grant's gone at the back end of this year, after not playing football for two years essentially and being able to play six games across the VFL and AFL.

"Obviously a positive at the moment is his knee is holding up quite well."

Friday, 2 August 2019
Grant Birchall suffers a right hamstring injury against the Kangaroos.

Birchall has been plagued with a combination of knee and calf injuries in recent years and this latest setback could spell the end of his 2019 season.

Saturday, 13 July 2019
Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson says Grant Brichall's long stint on the sidelines could actually extend his career.

Birchall returned for the Hawks' 31-point win over Fremantle at University of Tasmania Stadium on Saturday afternoon and amassed 21 disposals in what was largely a neat display, albeit with a couple of signs of rust.

"If he hasn't played for effectively three years, then we've got three years of a fresh player up our sleeve in a sense, as long as his knee can cope with the rigours of the game," Clarkson said.

"That's a little bit of an 'if', because he had a serious PCL injury and they're nasty injuries, but we think we've got a fresh player now."

Thursday, 11 July 2019
This week, Grant Birchall will make his return to football 740 days since his last senior game.

Birchall hasn't played since round 15, 2017, with a combination of knee and calf injuries keeping him on the sidelines.

"I'm just really excited to get back out there again. It's been a tough two years, but I get my opportunity this week so I’m rapt," he said.

"My body is the best it's been for a long time. I've ticked all the boxes, I'm fit, I'm ready to go, so I'm looking forward to it."

Friday, 21 December 2018
Grant Birchal undergoes another round of knee surgery to have floating cartilage removed.
Tuesday, 4 December 2018
After almost two years of dealing with knee injuries, Grant Birchall says his body is close to fully fit again.

"It's been a frustrating 18 months, it's fair to say, but I'm feeling really good, the knee's in a good spot and I'm right to go for day one (of pre-season), so I'm looking forward to it," he said.

Tuesday, 4 September 2018
Grant Birchall's bid to be part of the Hawks' 2018 finals campaign is delayed after the defender suffered a minor adductor strain at training.
Monday, 27 August 2018
Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson says he would not hesitate to pick Grant Birchall to play in the 2018 finals if he was fit.

Birchall has not played a single game in 2018 due to ongoing issues with the posterior cruciate ligament in his knee, an injury that limited him to just five games in 2017.

"He's a ripper, unheralded, perhaps underrated by many in the game outside the walls of our footy club," Clarkson said.

"We'd select him in a heartbeat if he can prove to himself and us that he can do enough to run out a game."

Friday, 1 June 2018
Grant Birchall remains at least a month away after three bouts of right knee surgery in the past 12 months.

"Because he's had three surgeries, he was unable to condition his legs in that time and he's deconditioned a bit, so we've just got to make sure he does a really, really strong training block," Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson said.

"He's already missed a significant amount of football and we've just got to make sure when he's back that we've got him for a sustainable period."

Friday, 16 March 2018
Grant Birchall faces up to half of the 2018 season on the sidelines after hurting his knee again.

The 30-year-old was on the verge of playing once more following a previous PCL injury, but pulled up sore after a training session earlier this week.

"Grant was progressing really well and had been coping with the training loads," Hawks general manager of football Graham Wright said.

"His training was solid this week, but unfortunately he experienced some swelling and upon investigation, we found some cartilage damage."

Thursday, 11 January 2018
Grant Birchall won't be running until at least the end of January after undergoing an arthroscope on his troublesome right knee.

"(There was) a bit of crappy stuff and a bit of swelling in the front of my knee, so I went and cleaned that up and I'm feeling pretty good at the moment," Birchal said.

"It will probably be a couple of weeks out, but I'm glad it's done now – it needed to be done – so I'm on a modified program, and hopefully all being well I will be able to run towards the end of the month."

Tuesday, 8 August 2017
Grant Birchall will undergo a posterior cruciate ligament reconstruction after failing to overcome persistent soreness in his knee.

It has been a wretched 2017 season for the 30-year-old who has managed just five games this year because of various ailments including a fractured jaw.

Friday, 7 July 2017
Grant Birchall's season could be over after he experienced swelling in his return from a posterior cruciate ligament injury.

"He's just had a little bit of swelling attached to that PCL that he hurt against Melbourne earlier in the year," Hawks coach Alastair Clarkson said.

"If that doesn't settle then he might be dusted for the year as well, but if it does then hopefully he'll only miss a week or two."

Tuesday, 9 May 2017
Grant Birchall’s luckless 2017 campaign has continued, with confirmation of a medial ligament strain that will keep him out for up to a month.

Birchall was only a few minutes into his first game since missing a month because of a fractured jaw when he landed awkwardly during a marking contest at the MCG.

Sunday, 2 April 2017
Grant Birchall will miss about a month after suffering a fractured jaw in Hawthorn's 24-point loss to Adelaide at the MCG.

Birchall received a stray elbow from Crows forward Tom Lynch early in the first quarter while competing for an aerial ball, but he managed to get through the full match.

"Grant had scans last night which unfortunately confirmed a fracture of the jaw," Hawks football manager Jason Burt said.

"He will have surgery today and we will have a better idea on his timeline for return following that. At this stage, it is likely to be somewhere between three to four weeks."

Thursday, 8 December 2016
Hawthorn keeps Grant Birchall off the free agency market, signing him to a two-year contract extension that keeps him at the club until the end of 2019.

"Grant is a really important player for us and a vital member of our backline," Hawthorn list manager Graham Wright list.

"He has been a part of this club for over 10 years now and we were really keen to retain him.

"We are really pleased that Grant has signed on for another two seasons and believe he has plenty of good footy ahead of him."

Wednesday, 28 October 2015
Robbie Gray will be one of six AFL Players flying to take part in an innovative Gatorade testing program to improve player hydration.

Joining Gray will be Hawthorn's Luke Hodge and Grant Birchall, Western Bulldogs forward Jake Stringer, Geelong defender Harry Taylor, West Coast's best and fairest winner Andrew Gaff and Power assistant coach Matthew Nicks.

Saturday, 16 May 2015
Sam Mitchell reveals that Grant Birchall is one of his more vocal teammates on the field.

"Although you might meet him and think he's very quiet, there would be a lot of opposition players that might say otherwise. On the field, when he's playing his best footy, he's quite demanding and sets high standards for himself and his teammates," Mitchell said.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015
Grant Birchall will be sidelined for up to six weeks after damaging his medial ligament during a tackling drill at training.

Hawthorn remains confident the 27-year-old will be available for the latter part of the NAB Challenge.

Friday, 6 December 2013
Despite being contracted to the end of 2015, Grant Birchall re-signs with the Hawks for a further two years.

"I'm rapt to be able to sign up again," Birchall said.

"I think in the next couple of years we're going to be right up there and challenging again so it was a bit of a no-brainer in the end."

"Hawthorn gave me an opportunity at a young age so I just really want to repay them and continue to play some good footy."

Tuesday, 25 June 2013
Hawthorn's defence suffers another knee injury blow with All-Australian Grant Birchall to miss around six weeks after damaging his posterior cruciate ligament against West Coast.

"We've discovered that in the same incident where he hurt his calf, he also hurt the PCL in his knee when he hit the ground,'' coaching and development manager Chris Fagan said.

"Unfortunately that means he's going to be out for somewhere between four and six weeks, and it could even be longer, depending on how his rehabilitation progresses.''

Friday, 12 April 2013
Hawk defender Grant Birchall says he is getting used to life as a marked man after being tagged by opponents in the backline.

"I copped a little bit last year, but I feel as though I can handle it all right," Birchall said.

"It's tough, but you've just got to find a way and dig in."

Wednesday, 20 June 2012
Hawthorn inks new deal with Grant Birchall that keeps the defender at the club for three more seasons until the end of 2015.

"I think the club's heading in the right direction, and I'm really happy to sign on for another three years," Birchall said.

Thursday, 8 September 2011
Grant Birchall says he has learnt from a tough couple of years to rebound back into form in 2011.

"I guess the last couple of years have been a bit of a roadblock," he said.

"I've learnt from that. Learned it's a really tough game. It can be tough to get up every week. I think over the last couple of years, I've mentally gotten a bit stronger.

"Just focused on each week, on the moment - what I have to do there and then - not worry about selection of any other stuff I can't control."

Wednesday, 13 May 2009
Hawthorn defender Grant Birchall says injuries to key backmen have hurt the Hawks this year.

"Five of our defenders from the premiership team haven't played for the last couple of weeks. It is hard. You want some stability in your back six," Birchall said.

"We haven't really had that this year. In saying that, it gives some guys good opportunities. Tom Murphy has stepped up this week. Brendan Whitecross and Beau Dowler are starting to play regular footy across the backline and are getting some exposure. From that point of view it is a positive."

Thursday, 7 May 2009
Premiership backmen Grant Birchall, Stephen Gilham and Xavier Ellis are a chance to play for Hawthorn against Essendon.

"We are slowly getting some guys back," Hawthorn coach Alastair Clarkson said.

"We just need to make a decision post-training today whether we bring them back through Box Hill or whether we play them in the seniors straight up."

Tuesday, 14 April 2009
A fractured thumb will sideline Hawthorn defender Grant Birchall for at least three rounds.
Star Hawthorn defender Grant Birchall joins casualties from Sunday's win over North after scans reveal damage to his thumb that will keep him out of action for a month.
Sunday, 1 March 2009
Three fresh injuries to defenders Stephen Gilham (knee), Campbell Brown (ankle) and Grant Birchall (suspected hamstring) will force Hawthorn to begin their AFL premiership defence with a backline well short of a decent preparation.
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