North Melbourne veteran Brent Harvey is looking at the prospect of signing a new deal with the club to extend his illustrious AFL career into a 20th season. Harvey, who has been at Kangeroos since 1996, is reportedly waiting to see how his 36-year old body holds up throughout the remainder of the 2014 season before deciding on whether to play on. Despite his advancing years, Harvey has continued to hold his own in the AFL, and North fans would be happy to see their former skipper continue his career for more than just sentimentality’s sake.
Harvey has been playing on a year-by-year basis for the past six years and has always left new contract talks until the end of the season. North football director Geoff Walsh has previously praised Harvey for his incredible consistency and longevity, making it clear it would take “a brave man” to tell the Roos stalwart that he was no longer needed at the club.
Harvey’s continued presence in the North team has seen him reach seventh in the AFL’s all-time games list, with the veteran passing 373 games in the league since his debut in 1996. Not since round 13 of 2009 has Harvey missed a game through injury and the four-time All Australian has remained one of the league’s most durable players despite also being one of its hardest working.
Even in his 19th season, Harvey has shown no signs of slowing down, playing every game and averaging 25.9 possessions and 1.4 goals a match to climb up to fifth in the Official AFL Player Ratings. Harvey currently finds himself tied with midfielder Ben Cunnington as North’s leading contender with 33 votes in this year’s AFL Coaches’ Association Champion Player of the Year award. Harvey has won a record five best and fairest awards for North and is among the Betfair favourites to win this year’s count following the opening 12 rounds of the season.