A key part of Hawthorn’s recent golden era, football boss Graham Wright has resigned and is poised to join AFL rivals Collingwood.
Wright had been at Hawthorn since 2007, initially working in recruitment and list management – during which time the club won four premierships in 2008, 2013, 2014 and 2015 – before taking on their head of football role in 2018.
He is set to return to the Magpies – whose long-serving football boss Geoff Walsh retired late last year – where he previously forged a long playing career.
Wright played 201 games for Collingwood from 1988 to 1998, winning the 1990 premiership and finishing runner-up in that year’s Brownlow Medal.
“Graham has given this club incredible service over a number of years and we will be forever grateful for his contribution and commitment to the brown and gold,” Hawthorn chief executive Justin Reeves said.
“While it is always disappointing to lose someone of Graham’s calibre, we are also supportive of his decision and understand that the time is right for Graham to seek a new challenge.
“On behalf of everyone at Hawthorn I would like to wish Graham, Tracey, Ethan and James all the best for the next chapter of their lives.”
Wright will finish up at Hawthorn this week with general manager of football operations Rob McCartney to be acting head of football while the club seeks a replacement.
Nick Maxwell and Marcus Wagner have been sharing Collingwood’s general manager of football role since Walsh’s departure on December 18.