Career ends with a broken hand

November 30, 2023 1:55 pm in by
Retiring Geelong AFLW veteran Renee Garing. (Sports Media Image/Marcel Berens)

Renee Garing won’t forget her final game just for the heartbreaking loss suffered by Geelong that denied the Cats their maiden AFLW grand final appearance.

Scans have confirmed an incident during the four-point loss to the Brisbane Lions left the midfielder with a broken hand.

The 35-year-old underwent surgery yesterday (Wednesday) to have a break in the fourth metacarpal on her right hand repaired.

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“I got my fingers caught on an opposition when I was trying to put on a block,” Garing told K rock Football.

“I got it strapped up and played the game out. It was uncomfortable, but with a bit of adrenaline, I got through the game.

“The scan confirmed there was a break in there.

“I’ve got plenty of time to recover.”


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Garing says she “would have done everything that I could have” to play this week if the result had been different against the Lions.

“Someone mentioned with some surgery and with some support, potentially (I could have played),” she said.

“If it wasn’t going to affect me or do any more damage, then I would have been out there, I’d say.”

A member of Geelong’s inaugural VFLW and AFLW teams, Garing played 33 AFLW games.

She says the reality that her seven-year stint at the Cats is over hasn’t sunk in yet.

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“I think it will once everyone’s back into training and doing their summer programs, going to meetings about the season ahead, and I’m not,” Garing said.

“We’ve still got our best-and-fairest to look forward to and some meetings to wrap up the season.

“So, I still feel a part of it at this point in time.

“But, once all that’s finished and everyone goes their own way for the off-season, I think it will hit me then.”

Garing, who is eyeing a return to local netball, says she will look back at pride on what she’s achieved in the seven years since testing herself at Geelong’s open sessions in late 2016.

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“I’m really grateful for the opportunity the Cats have given me and to take a chance on me as a netballer with very little skill coming in,” she said.

“Fitness helped me in those early days, but it’s taken a lot of patience for someone that’s a bit of a perfectionist and likes to do things really well to learn a new sport at 28.

“Particularly in those early days, there was a lot of frustration with myself in not being able to do the things I wanted to do.

“The practise that it took, and the hours I put in alongside full-time work, to get a spot in that inaugural team and then be around it this long.”