If Dean Bristow can recover from an ongoing back issue in time for Saturday’s match between Tumut and Gundagai at Anzac Park, the 31-year-old could very well be playing his last ever regular season match.
It is this ongoing back injury, that has been exacerbated due to a late diagnosis of Scoliosis, that will likely see Bristow finish up at the end of the season.
“That’s why I’ve had so many back issues over the years. It was only recently diagnosed,” Bristow said.
“I would more than likely say that at this stage, this will be my last season. I don’t know if the body would hold up to another year of Group 9.”
The possibility of finishing his career with back-to-back premierships certainly has the popular custodian keen to get back on the paddock as soon as possible.
“I can honestly say that this is something I could never have imagined being possible, and I will be doing my best to get back out there,” Bristow said.
Blues president Bryan Black acknowledged it would be hard to see Bristow backing up in a playing capacity next season, but emphasised the club’s desire to have the captain/coach involved again next season.
“Still having him involved in the club would be our goal, whether it would be coaching or assisting the new coaches. Just having him around brings so much to the club,” Black said.
In the ultimate compliment, Black said Bristow had been integral to the club’s current culture and bringing pride back into the jersey.
“He has just brought pride back into the jersey and he has instilled that in all the up and coming players,” Black said.