Patrick Savage has been through the highs and the lows at Albion Football Club.
Having joined the club as an eight-year-old he has gone through all the ranks and has captained the side in recent years.
On Saturday, he is set to run out for game 400 as the Western Region Football League club takes on North Footscray in division 2.
“It feels good to have been playing for a lot of years,” he said before the milestone game.
“It’s a good milestone to hit. It’s not something that you look at doing and you don’t give much thought to.
‘When you play for 25 years, you’re bound to get there.”
The 400 games includes both juniors and seniors, with Savage having played in every age group from under-10s through to reserves and seniors.
He won a under-16 league best and fairest award in 2005 among other awards and was a reserves premiership player in 2009.
Savage said the highlight of his career came the next year, as he was part of Albion’s A-grade premiership side.
“It was just really special,” he said. “It came together with the right mix of recruits and players who had been around for a long time.
“It’s the most special thing you can do playing sport. I’ll remember it for life.”
Since then there have been some tough times, with the club struggling for numbers and wins for a couple of years.
After a lot of hard work, things are on the up again. As captain of the senior team, Savage said it was really good to see things were turning around.
The side entered the weekend’s match in fifth spot, having won two of their first six matches.
“It has been a challenge that we’ve had to work through it,” he said. “Everyone is enjoying their footy and we’ve been able to manage to get that back. We’ve now started to add some players as well.
“The guys are coming down to training and you can tell it’s a good vibe and that we’re building to something.”
While the on field stuff is important, Savage said it’s more than just football. Having spent most of his life at the club, it has become a second home.
“Mate ship is why you play footy for,” he said. “That’s one of the best things about local footy.”
Savage said while he had 400 games up, he wasn’t sure what the future held.
“I’m still feeling okay,” he said. “The body might be capable, but whether I can still play mentally.
“I’m feeling OK, but I’ll see what happens.”
In other division 2 matches this weekend, Glen Orden will host Newport, Point Cook Centrals will face Parkside and Wyndhamvale will play West Footscray.