Hawthorn have announced that forward Jonathon Patton will retire from the AFL immediately.
The club had been investigating Patton after a number of women alleged the star forward had sent lewd messages.
“I have made the difficult decision to retire from football to focus on my health, wellbeing, and future outside of the game,” said Patton in a statement released by the club on Friday afternoon.
“The constant battle to overcome injuries since I entered the AFL 10 years ago has been relentless and, on many occasions, overwhelming. Whilst I have loved every minute of playing on the AFL stage, my enjoyment of the game has ultimately diminished. As such, I will not play football at any level this year.
“I also want to take this opportunity to apologise for my inappropriate behaviour towards women. Over the past few months, I have taken time to reflect on my mistakes. My actions were completely unacceptable, and I am truly sorry for any distress I have caused. I am committed to continuing to learn from my mistakes and actively make the necessary changes.
“I have very much appreciated the opportunities I have been given by both Hawthorn and the Giants and for the continued support I have received from countless teammates, staff and fans from both clubs.”
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