AFL Stalwart Robin Hull to retire

by Michael Whiting

AFL Queensland’s Rob Hull has seen just about everything during his 32 years in the sport, but not much better than the performance of the state team in the recent NAB AFL Under-16 Championships.

Playing the NSW/ACT RAMS for the division two title, Queensland trailed by 22 points at the last change.

But a stunning eight goals to one in the final quarter gave the boys from the Sunshine State their sixth under-16 crown in nine years.

It was not only a victory for Queensland, but also a great way for stalwart Hull, who retires on August 3, to finish his long tenure in the game.

“Unbelievable. I thought we were gone for all money,’ Hull said.

“This is probably the best one because of the way they did it in the last game.”

Hull, 65, started with AFL Queensland in 1980 as the regional director of coaching in north Queensland and came to Brisbane 10 years later when development money supplied by Brisbane Bears investor Christopher Skase dried up.

He worked in a similar role in Brisbane’s west and also covered the Darling Downs, Sunshine Coast and as far north as Bundaberg and Wide Bay.

In the past 12 years, Hull has been a liaison officer with the state under-16 and under-18 teams and also responsible for organising the Queensland Country Championships.

He has seen every Queensland junior from St Kilda captain Nick Riewoldt to Gold Coast ruckman Zac Smith develop from the juniors into the AFL.

Hull will move to the Sunshine Coast to spend time with his grandchildren and said he was particularly fond of working alongside AFL Queensland CEO Richard Griffiths (now with Greater Western Sydney), state talent manager Bob Batty and AFL Academies manager Mark Browning.

“It’s all the people you work with. If you get along with them, and they’re all good people, that makes it much easier.”

Hull will finish in his role as AFL Queensland’s Talent Development Officer on Friday.

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