ASK Chris Judd where he wants to be next year and the last place he will say is around football.
After 279 games, two Brownlow medals and one premiership, the former Carlton and West Coast captain is looking forward to taking a break from the game he dominated for 14 seasons.
‘I’m looking forward to having a break now,” Judd told the Mercury. ‘I had a wonderful 14 years doing it, but it sort of felt like I had a huge amount of exposure to footy and really enjoyed that, but I’m looking forward now to taking a back seat and really just getting back to being a fan of the game and exploring some other opportunities.”
Judd retired this season after rupturing his ACL in Carlton’s clash against Adelaide in Round 10 and has since taken a job at a private investment group.
Judd’s last involvement in football was as part of the selection panel to find Carlton’s new coach, a role that went to Tasmanian Brendon Bolton.
Sitting alongside such figures as renowned recruiting specialist David Campbell and Socceroos coach Ange Postecoglou was a daunting task for Judd, but he said it was a great experience.
‘I think sometimes you can over-estimate the importance of just using people that are inside the AFL industry and I think sometimes as an industry we’re guilty of that,” he said. ‘Being able to manage people and to motivate people … these sort of lessons are pretty widely translated from one industry to the next. So experienced people in not just the footy industry was really important.”
Despite not actively pursuing a career in football since his retirement, Judd says he will still follow the game.
‘Carlton and West Coast will be the two teams that I follow most closely, but to be honest, I just enjoy watching footy,” he said. ‘I went out of my way this year to watch Bulldogs games just because I thought they were playing the most entertaining brand of footy. And I guess that’ll continue to happen as time goes on.”
Judd’s glittering career is being relived in his autobiography Inside and he said the experience of writing the book was very personal.
‘By nature I’m a very private person so the process of putting that down on paper and opening yourself up to the public was a little bit uncomfortable.”
He said the highlight of his career was the 2006 premiership with West Coast and lists his finals wins with Carlton in 2011 against Essendon and 2013 against Richmond as his highlights with the Blues.
Judd will visit Hobart on Thursday as the guest at Wrest Point’s Lord’s Taverners breakfast, as well as meeting the fans with a book signing at Dymocks.
He said he was looking forward to getting back to Tasmania.
‘You’ve got Brendon Bolton who is our coach now so there is a bit of a link to Carlton and it feels like Carlton has got pretty strong ties with Tassie from the past,” Judd said. ‘I’ve always loved getting down there and really look forward to meeting the people.”
Lord’s Taverners Breakfast is on 7.30am-9.30am at Wrest Point on Thursday.
Book signing at Dymocks Centrepoint 1.30pm on Thursday.
This article was originally written for The Mercury