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SWFL 2023: Former St Kilda cult hero Stephen Milne to play one-off game for Collie Eagles

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Carly LadenBunbury Herald
Stephen Milne after a goal during an AFL match in 2013.
Camera IconStephen Milne after a goal during an AFL match in 2013. Credit: Andrew White/AFL Media

The South West Football League’s Think Mental Health round is fast becoming a showcase of former AFL greats, with a St Kilda cult hero signing on to get in on the action.

Two-time All-Australian forward Stephen Milne will play a one-off game for the Collie Eagles on Saturday June 11, when they host Busselton at Collie Recreation Ground.

Milne is the latest high-profile former AFL player to play in the SWFL, with the match falling on the same day Fremantle great David Mundy makes his return to football, running out for the Dunsborough Sharks in their match against Eaton.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - AUGUST 25:  Stephen Milne (R) and Nick Riewoldt of the Saints celebrate their win during the round 22 AFL match between the St Kilda Saints and the Gold Coast Suns at Etihad Stadium on August 25, 2013 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)
Camera IconNick Riewoldt and Stephen Milne with the St Kilda Saints. Credit: Michael Dodge/Getty Images

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Collie Eagles head coach Kade East said recruiting Milne for the Think Mental Health round was “huge” for the club and would definitely provide a fantastic learning opportunity for the squad, particularly their developing small forwards.

New Collie Eagles league coach Kade East.
Camera IconCollie Eagles league coach Kade East. Credit: Jackson Barrett/South Western Ti/South Western Ti

“We haven’t had a big-name ex-AFL player pull on the jumper for our club before so I’m predicting a large turnout,” he said.

“I think he’ll be able to give (our forwards) a few fundamentals to focus on and elevate their game and it will give a huge buzz to the rest of the group as well.”

The 43-year-old, who played 275 games and kicked 574 goals during his 12-year career with St Kilda, will be in town with former teammate Steven Baker for a Sportsman Night taking place in the days leading up to the match.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 14:  Stephen Milne and Steven Baker of the Saints stretch during a St Kilda Saints AFL training session at Linen House Oval on September 14, 2010 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Camera IconStephen Milne and Steven Baker. Credit: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

“There’s a huge St Kilda fanbase in Collie so it should be a really good opportunity for the loyal supporters to attend and have a good night too,” East said.

Milne returned to amateur football after retiring from AFL at the end of 2013 but retired from full-time commitments in 2018 to make marquee appearances at country clubs.

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