AFL icon Joel Selwood has finally addressed rumors that he will join the Australia cricket team in England to help them win the Ashes next month after starting a storm of speculation by revealing that he had been speaking to the manager. Andrew McDonald in March.
The recently retired Cats great revealed that ‘local Geelong boy’ McDonald had ‘been in touch for a period of time’ when he announced that he and fellow Brit would be in Europe when the series kicks off from June 16.
‘They [the Aussie team] they’re in a similar position to where the Cats are — they’ve got a lot of guys who are coming to the end of their careers and maybe finding their way for years to come,’ he explained at the time.
Selwood shocked AFL fans by taking a stand with the NRL’s Melbourne Storm shortly after leaving football, and his comments on cricket led many to believe another shocking code change was in the works for the four time first place winner.
However, he exclusively told Daily Mail Australia that the rumors are not only misplaced, but completely unfounded.
“That’s not true, there’s no truth to it at all,” he said.
Selwood (pictured with wife Brit and young son Joey) will be in England while the Ashes are active, and he has spoken to Australian cricket coach Andrew McDonald, but that’s as close as he’ll get to helping the national team retain the urn.
The Cats legend had the best possible end to his playing career when he led Geelong to a Sydney wrecking grand final last year (pictured)
‘Us [he and Brit] They go abroad on Sunday, but it is only a holiday. We headed to Spain, France and then London for a long period.’
Many AFL fans still can’t understand why the 34-year-old decided to help the Storm when any club in the league would be interested in securing his services, and he was candid when asked how his teammates reacted to the news. .
“They were pretty shocked, I mean, I was pretty shocked too,” Selwood admitted.
‘The opportunity was too great to work around Storm, they have values that aligned with mine.
“It was more about the people, participating and working with Frank [Ponissi, general manager] and craig [Bellamy, coach]look how they’ve been on top for so long.
Asked if he had learned anything from the Storm that he would like to know from his playing days with Geelong, Selwood pointed out a big difference between the two clubs.
The chance to work with Storm’s manager Craig Bellamy (pictured) at the NRL club was too good to turn down, but Selwood admitted he even surprised himself with the code switch.
Joey’s arrival has thrown Selwood’s exercise routines into chaos, but he still looks fit enough to rush out to a football game, something he hasn’t ruled out doing in the future.
“It’s been very different – I played for Geelong and most of our games were in Melbourne, but the Storm have to travel every two weeks so it’s a completely different programme,” he said.
‘They have to take care of their bodies during the week, so there is a lot of work to do to keep up.
“The Storm has a lot of great people taking care of their show, which is great to watch.”
Taking care of yourself has also changed a lot for the former Cats captain, who revealed the biggest change in his life now that he’s no longer a professional athlete.
“I exercise a lot less, but I have to blame that on [baby son] Joey more than anyone,’ he joked.
“I used to work out for hours every day, now it’s 20 minutes when I can get the chance.
It’s completely different. I would love to exercise more.
The Australian cricket team is shown celebrating their victory in the Ashes series after the fifth test in Hobart in January.
Selwood took such good care of his body during his playing days that many fans and pundits were sure he could have moved on, especially after his strong performance in last year’s grand final.
And he told Daily Mail Australia that he won’t be closing the door to return to the field, although if he did, his next game would definitely not take place in a packed MCG.
Several big-name former players, including Luke Hodge, Kane Cornes and Eddie Betts, have donned their boots again to help struggling country and suburban clubs, and the Cats legend is open to the idea.
“Maybe at the right time,” he said, “but I’m going abroad, so it’s not the right time now.”