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Callan Ward

#8   GWS Giants
Age: 32yr 5mth    Games: 270     Born: April 10, 1990     Origin: Western Jets
Height: 187cm     Weight: 83kg     Position: Midfield
Last Drafted: Round 2, Pick #19 2007 National Draft by Western Bulldogs
Supercoach Price: $461,000   Supercoach Profile
AFL Fantasy Price: $687,000   AFL Fantasy Profile
Contract Status: UFA at the end of 2023   AFL Player Contracts
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Callan Ward Biography

Sunday, 27 March 2022
On the eve of his 250th game, Callan Ward says he still dreams of winning a premiership.

"We all play for premierships and team success. Every year I watch teams play in the Grand Final I think 'I wish that was me', so bad," he said.

"I'm 15 years in now and I guess the main reason coming to the Giants was because I was confident we could play in a premiership, and I still am. Until I win a premiership I definitely won't be satisfied."

Friday, 7 May 2021
Callan Ward will break Jeremy Cameron's games record for GWS this weekend.

"It's a huge honour, to be honest. To play so many games at one club is really special and especially the club that I have been at since the very start," Ward said.

Tuesday, 25 August 2020
Callan Ward will spend a month on the sidelines after having surgery to correct a severely dislocated finger suffered in the Giants' loss to West Coast.

Despite the injury being visually gruesome, the surgery revealed no tendon damage or fracture.

Saturday, 8 August 2020
Callan Ward says he received death threats after he was the beneficiary of a divisive free kick that sealed the Giants' win over Essendon.

Ward was taken high by Bomber Shaun McKernan 40m from goal before converting a major to put the Giants 10 points clear with less than 90 seconds on the clock.

"I think it just has to stop because if you have been getting death threats like I have been getting, some players couldn't handle that," Ward said.

"The most disappointing thing is I have a lot of Essendon supporters and a lot of AFL supporters commenting on photos of Romeo, my baby, and saying that I am a flog and all this stuff. I am in a situation where I am an AFL footballer, but at the same time I am away from my family (wife Ruby and son in Sydney) and it is tough.

"It is disappointing to see where people feel the need to express their passion and hatred towards me at the moment."

Tuesday, 14 July 2020
Callan Ward will miss at least a month after injuring his knee in the round six loss to Port Adelaide.

Ward, who has played four games since returning from a ruptured ACL in his left knee, played out the game but scans later revealed damage to the lateral collateral ligament in his right 'good' knee.

"We expect he'll probably miss four to six weeks depending on how quickly he settles down but thankfully no need for surgery," GWS head of medical Cullan Ball said.

Thursday, 11 June 2020
Callan Ward will make his return from injury for the Giants this Sunday.

The midfielder will play for Greater Western Sydney on Sunday against North Melbourne in his first game since tearing his anterior cruciate ligament in round four last year.

But that injury came in the opening 10 minutes of that clash against Geelong and was his first appearance in 2019, making Ward feel like he hasn't played since the end of 2018.

Wednesday, 15 January 2020
Stephen Coniglio will captain GWS in 2020 as part of a six-man leadership group.

The Giants won't have any vice-captains under Coniglio, instead entrusting Josh Kelly and Matt de Boer to support the star midfielder, along with newcomers Jeremy Cameron, Toby Greene and Lachie Whitfield.

Phil Davis and Callan Ward have stepped away from the Giants' leadership group after eight seasons as co-captains of the club.

"We're very fortunate at the Giants to have some outstanding leaders and I'm really confident in the mix of players that will be supporting Stephen as on-field leaders," GWS footy boss Jason McCartney said.

Tuesday, 3 December 2019
Stephen Coniglio is officially unveiled as Greater Western Sydney's new captain after exiting skippers Phil Davis and Callan Ward handed him the baton during an off-season holiday weeks ago.

"It speaks volumes for the people they are, they were here from such a young age representing our playing group and setting high standards," Coniglio said of his former co-captains.

"For the boys to do the co-captaincy thing for as long as they did, there wouldn't be too many organisations where two guys can come together for that long and jell so well."

Coniglio becomes the club's first sole captain since the club entered the competition and says he wants to drive a winning culture at the Giants.

"As a captain and a player, that's why we're here. We're here to win," he said.

"We've been able to forge a really strong club and we've been to four finals series in a row, and we want success at this footy club.

"That’s really important to me, as is continuing the really strong culture we have."

Sunday, 19 May 2019
Phil Davis says playing in his upcoming 150th AFL match won't be the same without his co-captain Callan Ward who is recovering from a knee reconstruction.

Two of the club's first established signings in 2011, Davis and Ward were hand-picked to skipper the new club alongside veteran Luke Power through the Giants' inaugural season, and with Geelong's Joel Selwood, they're the longest-serving captains in the competition.

"With any milestone, you want to experience it with the people you've spent a lot of time with and gone through the most hardships with, and Cal is probably at the top of that tree," Davis said.

Ward says he's been privileged to watch Davis develop into one of the game's most respected leaders in their time at the Giants.

"At the start we both had to learn how to be leaders and we had no idea what we were doing, so we've had to grow and mature over the last eight years," Ward said.

"He used to be really black and white with the way he thought about things, especially leadership stuff when it came to football, but now he understands people and football a lot more.

"He understands that there's grey (areas) in people's personalities and the way they go about things so he's a lot more relatable, and that shows he's come a long way."

Sunday, 14 April 2019
Callan Ward's 2019 season is over after he ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament in a tackle by Cat Gary Ablett in the first quarter of the Giants' four-point victory at GMHBA Stadium.

"This is obviously devastating news for Callan who is a tremendous leader of our club," Giants football manager Wayne Campbell said.

"His character and leadership of the club is highly valued and I have no doubt he'll continue to play a very important role in the coming months."

Tuesday, 5 February 2019
Greater Western Sydney will be led by co-captains Phil Davis and Callan Ward for the eighth consecutive season as the club announced an unchanged leadership group for 2019.

Stephen Coniglio and Josh Kelly will again be vice-captains, while Matt de Boer is the final member of the group.

"What that process demonstrated for us is that we have a number of outstanding leaders at our club both in official leadership positions as well as across our entire playing group," Giants football manager Wayne Campbell said.

Friday, 27 July 2018
Callan Ward becomes the first GWS player to be awarded life membership.

Ward was given a rousing reception after training in front of the playing group and the entire Giants staff, with his 150th game – and 210th overall after playing 60 with the Western Bulldogs – against St Kilda this week seeing him join former coach Kevin Sheedy in an exclusive club of two as GWS life members.

"I think it's my greatest achievement in life so far to be honest," Ward said.

"I remember seeing the guys who were inducted as life members at the Western Bulldogs, and the speeches they made, and thinking 'if that was me I would be so, so proud'.

"To now do it at a club I've been at since the very first day, and a club I love, it's something I'm very proud of."

Saturday, 12 May 2018
GWS coach Leon Cameron reflects on the day he first met Callan Ward in his role as the Bulldogs' midfield coach.

Just 17 when his AFL career began, Ward was forced to juggle his year 12 studies with his debut season in 2008.

"When he first got to the footy club he had to train after hours, because he had to attend school during the day," Cameron told the AFL Record.

"He would rock in about 3.30pm when everybody else was leaving, and myself and the other coaches would have to train him as best we could from then until about 6.

"We were always mindful that completing his schooling was the most important thing."

Wednesday, 9 May 2018
On the eve of his 200th game, Callan Ward says he never thought he would reach this milestone when he first started his career.

"I still remember my first game. It's a long time ago now, but I remember it pretty clearly," Ward said.

"I think Bob Murphy was interviewed by Bruce McAvaney after the game and Bob said that he thought I'd go on to play 200 games.

"I remember listening to that and thinking, 'There's no way I'll play 200 games', but it's actually come true.

"It's pretty crazy to think that I've got my 200th this weekend."

Monday, 5 March 2018
Matt de Boer's remarkable career renaissance after being elevated into a new-look leadership group at Greater Western Sydney.

The Giants will again be led by co-captains Callan Ward and Phil Davis, who continue in the role for the seventh straight year, with vice-captain Stephen Coniglio joined by star midfielder Josh Kelly as a deputy.

All Australian Dylan Shiel was voted into the group again, but opted to step away from his leadership duties, while veteran defender Heath Shaw also made way.

Friday, 6 October 2017
Josh Kelly caps off an outstanding 2017 season, taking home the Kevin Sheedy Medal as the Giants' 2017 Club Champion.

Kelly finished 26 ahead of co-captain and 2012 Kevin Sheedy Medallist Callan Ward on 172 votes. Fellow co-captain Phil Davis (153 votes), 2017 Virgin Australia All Australian Dylan Shiel (152 votes) and running machine Tom Scully (137 votes) rounded out the top five.

“There’s no doubt Josh took his game to a new level this year playing a variety of roles and playing with a high level of consistency," Giants coach Leon Cameron said.

“He was part of our leadership group for the first time this year and everyone at the Giants admires his dedication to the club and playing group."

Tuesday, 22 March 2016
Callan Ward and key defender Phil Davis will co-captain GWS for a fifth-straight season, but Shane Mumford and Tom Scully have made way for four new additions to the group.

Reigning club champion Heath Shaw will again support Ward and Davis, who have shared the skipper's role since the Giants entered the competition in 2012.

Gun midfielders Stephen Coniglio, Dylan Shiel and Devon Smith, and defender Matt Buntine, all 22-year-old Giants' 'originals', have been given a spot on the leadership team for the first time.

"We've had young guys who have been doing leadership stuff for four years that they've been here and they're ready to step in," Ward said.

"We didn't want the group too large, and seven is the perfect number for us.

"We've got four fifth-year players who are terrific leaders, terrific men; that's what we're about at this football club, great men and great people so I think it's really good signs for us.

"They'll fill the shoes really well."

Monday, 21 March 2016
Callan Ward signs a five-year deal with Greater Western Sydney that will keep him at the club until the end of 2021.

"This is where I want to finish my career so I had no hesitation in putting pen to paper," Ward said.

"The club has come a long way since I first got here and I'm very confident we're heading in the right direction both on and off the field."

Wednesday, 11 February 2015
GWS will stick with co-captains Callan Ward and Phil Davis who will share in the leadership of the club in 2015.

Tom Scully and Heath Shaw have been reappointed as vice-captains, while Shane Mumford remains in the leadership group.

"To go into our fourth year with a virtually unchanged leadership group speaks volumes about the stability and maturity of the club and is a tremendous endorsement of our leaders," Giants coach Leon Cameron said.

"Callan and Phil have developed into outstanding young leaders on and off the field and are ably supported by Tom, Heath and Shane."

Tuesday, 21 October 2014
Greater Western Sydney appears determined to maintain the rage against the Western Bulldogs, taking the animosity between the two clubs to a provocative new level on social media.

In a tweet to its 26,000 followers, the official GWS account posted a picture of former Bulldogs Leon Cameron, Ryan Griffen and Callan Ward, touting them as 'lost dogs' and using the hashtag #belessbulldog.

Saturday, 6 September 2014
Shane Mumford has capped a stellar first season with Greater Western Sydney by winning the Kevin Sheedy Medal for the club's best and fairest player of 2014.

Mumford finished with 81 votes despite missing five matches early in the season with a knee injury, claiming the award ahead of Callan Ward and Devon Smith, who tied for second.

"Shane has played an instrumental role in leading the Giants' midfield this year," GWS coach Leon Cameron said.

"He is one of the leaders of the club and, with the rest of the leadership group, helps set the standards and behaviours of the playing group."

Saturday, 7 June 2014
Callan Ward says he never wanted to be a leader until moving to the Giants.

"It was something (GWS football manager) Graeme Allan asked me if I wanted to do," Ward said.

"In my mind, I never really thought I could be a leader.

"I thought I may as well try it and if I didn't like it, that's fine, at least I could say I've tried it to be a captain of Greater Western Sydney."

Tuesday, 22 April 2014
Richard Douglas has been hit with a two-game ban for engaging in rough conduct against Greater Western Sydney co-captain Callan Ward.

Douglas bumped an unsuspecting Ward with his shoulder during the second quarter of the Crows' win last Sunday on Adelaide Oval as the Giants' co-captain was chasing Adelaide's Brodie Smith.

The incident was referred directly to the Tribunal, leaving members Richard Loveridge, Emmett Dunne and Wayne Schimmelbusch to grade the incident that left Ward concussed and unable to take further part in the match.

Sunday, 20 April 2014
GWS coach Leon Cameron says losing Callan Ward to concussion after a bump from Crow Richard Douglas was costly to his young side.

"We've got 19 players under 50 games, our average games is about 30 … to have one of your 100-game players go down half way through the second quarter was disappointing," Cameron said.

"It's obviously controversial, the bump, but from our point of view it was just disappointing to lose him considering that leadership we do need.

"Then you rely on a five-gamer, or a seven-gamer or a 31-game player to actually try and pick us up off the canvas when we started to lose control."

Tuesday, 11 February 2014
Phil Davis and Callan Ward are retained as GWS co-captains in 2014 with Heath Shaw joining Tom Scully as vice-captains of the club.

Shane Mumford and Stephen Gilham round out the leadership group.

"I don't know what the media in Melbourne think about Heath, because they always seem to be on his back, but he's been unbelievable," Davis said about Shaw.

"What they thought he was going to provide has been nowhere near what he's actually been able to do.

"He's been enormous for our footy club and he's just a natural leader, people are drawn to him, he's an infectious character, he leads by example and sets good standards."

Wednesday, 31 July 2013
GWS co-captain Callan Ward says he has a feeling Lance Franklin will join the Giants next year.

"My gut feel is probably yes, but I would have no idea," Ward told SEN Radio.

"I hope he does. He's obviously a great player. He's extremely talented. I think at the Giants he will be great for us."

Friday, 7 September 2012
Former Bulldog Callan Ward has taken out the Giant's inaugural best player award, ahead of young star Toby Greene.

"Callan has consistently been one of our best players all year," GWS coach Kevin Sheedy said.

"He is a tough, hard midfielder who has shown strong leadership on and off the field to this young team. He plays with tremendous spirit and has a very big future ahead of him."

Thursday, 22 March 2012
GWS co-captain Callan Ward admits there's a special feeling tied to the stand-alone start of the 2012 AFL season between the Giants and Sydney.

"It's been a huge buildup for this round-one game. Almost as big as a prelim, which is great," Ward said.

"Seeing the billboards - and I've had heaps of calls from people that live here saying they can't stop hearing about the game this weekend. There's just a huge buzz around the football club."

Tuesday, 14 February 2012
He arrived at Greater Western Sydney full of doubts but in just one pre-season Callan Ward has developed the confidence to be named captain.

"I guess I was a little bit uncomfortable at first and didn't know how I'd go, but all the guys have been great and made me feel welcome," he said.

"I do feel like a senior player here and feel like I have helped out the young kids here already. I do now feel comfortable in the role I've been given."

Veteran Luke Power, plus young recruits Callan Ward and Phil Davis will lead GWS as co-captains during its debut season in the AFL.

"We think these players will provide first-class leadership and support for the club both on and off the field as we build a team that can compete for ultimate success in the years to come," GWS chairman Tony Shepherd said.

"In particular I want to congratulate Luke, Callan and Phil on becoming the inaugural captains of the GWS Giants."

Tuesday, 25 October 2011
Greater Western Sydney recruit Callan Ward says he is confident he made the right decision in changing clubs.

"I still think I've made the right decision. I guess it's too early to really tell and the future will look after itself but I'm still pretty confident I've made the right one," Ward said.

"I'm mostly looking forward to moving my stuff up and settling in, and training and just getting stuck into pre-season and getting fit."

Monday, 24 October 2011
Callan Ward says it has always been his dream to represent Australia in the international rules series against Ireland.

"It's always something I dreamt of as a kid, playing for Australia in anything, really," Ward said.

"Learning off guys I usually play against, Stephen Milne and guys like that, means it's going to be a great experience."

Wednesday, 7 September 2011
Callan Ward says while money played a part in his decision to move to GWS, it was not the only factor.

"It's obviously a factor and it can play in the decision, but there was plenty more to it than that," Ward said.

"I've been in the western suburbs my whole life and I think this is all part of my football journey. I'm here now and I'm really looking forward to starting a new life in Greater Western Sydney."

Tuesday, 6 September 2011
AFL CEO Andrew Demetriou has defended Callan Ward's move from the Western Bulldogs to Greater Western Sydney.

"I keep hearing about what the Western Bulldogs did or didn't do, and what GWS did, but it's entirely a decision for Callan Ward," Demetriou said.

"It's a good system that allows a player choose where he wants to go at the end of a contract. I don't think we should begrudge a young player who wants to further his career up there."

Monday, 5 September 2011
Callan Ward has informed the Western Bulldogs he will head to new AFL franchise Greater Western Sydney next season.

"We have done everything we responsibly could to keep Callan at the Western Bulldogs," Bulldogs chief executive Simon Garlick said.

"While it's disappointing that Callan has made this decision, we will be looking to ensure we receive appropriate compensation to enable us to continue to build on our solid core of experienced players and exciting pool of young talent."

Saturday, 3 September 2011
The loss of Callan Ward to GWS would hurt the Bulldogs more than Geelong was damaged by Gary Ablett's move, says James Fantasia.

"I think it hurts us more if [Ward] leaves compared to Geelong with Gary Ablett [leaving for the Gold Coast]," Fantasia said.

"He takes life very simply and he's just a remarkable young man and that's why it's going to hurt us [if he does go]."

Wednesday, 31 August 2011
The Bulldogs refuse to believe reports that Callan Ward has signed with GWS and say that they haven't given up hope of keeping the young midfielder.

"We're staying solid as a footy club,'' Bulldogs caretaker coach Paul Williams said.

"We don't have any reason to think (he's going) until he tells us. He hasn't told us that he's staying and he hasn't told us that he's going, so there's no difference.''

Tuesday, 30 August 2011
The Western Bulldogs are hopeful but not confident of fending off Greater Western Sydney's advances for Callan Ward.

"I'm confident we have done everything we could within reason to keep Callan," Bulldogs president David Smorgon told The Age.

"But you've got to be responsible to the needs of your entire list and we couldn't have done any more."

Friday, 19 August 2011
Rodney Eade says he thinks Callan Ward might be playing with Greater Western Sydney in 2012.

"I spoke to Callan about it for the first time last week and said I wasn't putting any pressure on but if it's any help, I know the pressure you've got and think your way though it," Eade said.

"He said he was 50-50 and hadn't made a decision but you hear rumours that he has and he's going."

Thursday, 30 June 2011
Callan Ward has admitted he was approached by the Giants but the Dogs are hopeful the midfielder will stay.

"I think being a local boy and how he's viewed around the club as a future leader... we're more than hopeful he'll stay," Bulldogs coach Rodney Eade said.

"He's an extremely valuable player and we're doing everything in our power. He's courageous, he's tough, he's young, and we see him as a future leader of the club."

Wednesday, 29 June 2011
Melbourne's Herald Sun reports of an alleged mid-season approach by the GWS to Callan Ward which is forbidden according to AFL rules.

The allegation is dismissed by AFL boss Andrew Demetriou.

"It's news to me. I read that in the paper, but if I believed everything I read, at the moment they must have signed about 800 players," Demetriou told a press conference in Sydney.

"But if the GWS Giants have breached any rules I'll soon know about it and it certainly hasn't come across my desk."

Sunday, 27 February 2011
Bulldogs captain Matthew Boyd is confident the club will be able to retain young midfielder Callan Ward.

"We see some real upside in both his football abilities and his leadership abilities as well. It'd be great to keep him and we're pretty confident that he'll be able to renew [his contract] and stay on as a Bulldog," Boyd said.

"He certainly knows that he's wanted around the club. We obviously encourage him and try and include him as much as we can in all the things around the footy club so he knows he's well loved at this place."

Sunday, 30 January 2011
Rodney Eade says having a fit Shaun Higgins and Callan Ward is like having two new recruits for 2011.

"We didn't get a whole lot out of them last year. Cal obviously played well in the finals, but having those two quality players back is like having new players around," Eade said.

"Shaun's pre-season has been fantastic. He hasn't missed a beat, he's really strong and is running exceptionally well."

Friday, 2 July 2010
Bulldog Callan Ward is ready to play his first game for the year after missing more than half the season with osteitis pubis.

"It was definitely scary," Ward said.

"I did everything possible rehab-wise for my groin. Now at training I don't even feel it. I was told I'd feel it all year and in the last two or three weeks, I haven't felt it at all."

Tuesday, 30 March 2010
Callan Ward strains a groin in the Bulldogs NAB Cup Grand Final and is not expected to return to action until round 4.
Tuesday, 4 August 2009
Western Bulldog Callan Ward has been nominated as the round 18 NAB AFL Rising Star.

"There are quite a lot of good players out there so I'm not surprised at all," Ward said of having waiting to wait until round 18 after a string of consistent performances before receiving his nomination.

"I guess I knew that if I kept playing consistently, which I think I have been over the last eight or 10 weeks the chance would come and it has."

Ward played 6 games in 2008 and attributes his improved form in 2009 to getting a full pre-season under his belt.

"Getting the full pre-season at the start of the year has helped with fitness," he said.

"Last year I didn't do the whole pre-season and I feel more confident now in running out games.

"This year I've had a lot more time to work on my own game, to man up on other guys and talk to the coaches about how to improve my game."

Wednesday, 24 June 2009
Western Bulldogs coach Rodney Eade believes Callan Ward is on the verge of NAB AFL Rising Star recognition after impressive performances in the past month.

"He's playing very good footy. His last three games have been fantastic," Eade said.

"His chance will come. Unless they have a standout game, they reward players for consistency.

"Callan's not far away. He's just got to keep working on his deficiencies. He's been a valued addition to the team."

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