Skip to main content
Main content

Adelaide Football Club - Crows History Locker

Rory Sloane

Games Played 255

Career 2009 - 2024

Debut 2009

Date of Birth 17/03/1990


AFC Debut Number: 168                AFC Debut Game:  Round 20 v Hawthorn, 2009
AFC Career Guernsey Numbers: 31  2009-10  15 games     9  2011-24 240 games


Rory Sloane’s rise from ignored AFL draft candidate to one of Adelaide’s finest footballers ranks high among the Club’s best recruiting success stories.

Forced to retire in late April 2024 after suffering a serious eye injury earlier in the year, Sloane played 255 AFL games for the Crows and was one of the competition’s most influential, selfless and admired players.

Adelaide’s longest serving Victorian draftee was a dual Crows Club Champion and three-time runner-up, Club captain and All-Australian midfielder. During his 16 seasons at the Club, Sloane also won three Coaches’ Awards, three Members’ MVP awards, the Players Trademark award (2019) and the Dr Brian Sando Trophy in 2017 for his resilience and professionalism. He qualified for Life Membership in 2018.

Sloane, from Upwey-Tecoma, was drafted by Adelaide in late 2008 but had been on the club’s radar the previous year as a draft eligible 17-year-old. He was overlooked by every club, however, before returning to TAC Cup side Eastern Ranges where he won a second Club best-and-fairest and received the 2008 TAC Cup Coaches’ Award.

Adelaide’s regret at not selecting Sloane at the first opportunity turned to relief when he was secured with pick 44 at the 2008 national draft. He immediately impressed during the pre-season and made his first appearances in Crows colours during the pre-season NAB Cup/Challenge games.

A strained knee medial ligament stalled his first season but Sloane then played some good football in the SANFL with North Adelaide and was selected to make his AFL debut against Hawthorn in round 20 at the MCG. He did not record a kick but had six handballs and seven tackles in limited game time.

Sloane played his second AFL game in round one of 2010 against Fremantle but suffered a serious ankle injury and missed the next eight weeks. He returned for the last 13 games, playing on the wing, at half-forward and through the midfield.

The fan favourite started his career in No. 31 before taking over No.9 from 300-gamer and former teammate Tyson Edwards ahead of the 2011 season. For the second consecutive year he was injured in the opening round, this time copping a fractured jaw and broken thumb. After missing five games he made a strong return and finished sixth in the Club Champion votes.

After only 33 games Sloane was added to the leadership group in 2012 and continued his emergence as a star midfielder, finishing third in the best-and-fairest. The following season he won his first Malcolm Blight Medal as Club Champion and ranked among the best midfielders in the competition, providing a mix of defensive and offensive impact.

When captain Nathan van Berlo suffered a season-ending Achilles injury during pre-season training in 2014, Sloane and Patrick Dangerfield were named as acting co-captains. Sloane finishing runner-up in the Malcolm Blight Medal behind Daniel Talia, was voted the Members’ MVP and played his 100th AFL game in the last round of the season against St Kilda.

Sloane signed a three-year contract extension with Adelaide during the 2015 season but twice broke a cheekbone, missing six games. He was back to his best in 2016, spending more time in the centre square after Dangerfield’s departure. Sloane was rewarded with his second Malcolm Blight Medal and earned All-Australian selection for the first time, named vice-captain. In addition, he finished runner-up in the AFL Coaches’ Association Champion Player of the Year, as well as the AFL Players’ Association MVP award. He also received the club’s Coaches’ Award and member-voted 19th Man Award – both for the third time – and polled 24 Brownlow Medal votes.

Sloane was again one of the AFL’s elite midfielders in the 2017 season, when Adelaide won the minor premiership but stumbled on grand final day. Sloane, who missed the qualifying final against GWS after appendix surgery, was runner-up to Matt Crouch in the Club Champion voting, won the Showdown Medal in round four, was voted AFLPA Most Courageous Player and received an All-Australian nomination.

A serious foot injury restricted Sloane to only 12 games in 2018 but he gave Crows fans plenty to cheer when he signed a five-year contract during the year, despite strong interest from Victorian clubs.

In 2019, Sloane was appointed co-captain alongside close mate Taylor Walker and was runner-up in the Club Champion to Brad Crouch. Sloane assumed the sole captaincy for 2020 when Walker stepped down and in round one played his 200th AFL game against Sydney at an empty Adelaide Oval, silenced at the start of COVID-19 pandemic. The competition resumed nearly three months later but a hand injury sidelined him for five rounds. He returned to play a part in Adelaide’s only three wins of a challenging year.

Sloane had surgery on a detached retina early in the 2021 season and was out for a month as the Crows continued to rebuild under his leadership. During the season he was selected on the wing in Adelaide’s “Best 22 of 30 Years”.

Sloane ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee in round five of 2022 but was determined to return to the field. He passed the captaincy to Jordan Dawson before the 2023 season to focus on his recovery and he earned selection for round one. Sloane went on to play 23 games, missing only the final match of the season against West Coast. He played his 250th game in round 16 after extending his career into a 16th season by signing a one-year deal.

However, another detached retina during the pre-season led to his retirement in late April as the Crows prepared for the Showdown. “The risk of another eye injury is too great,” said Sloane, whose emotional week culminated in a lap of honour before the game, fan-led applause at the nine-minute mark of the first quarter and being chaired off by Taylor Walker and Matt Crouch after Adelaide’s win.



Season No. Games Goals Behinds Kicks Handballs Disposals Marks Tackles
2009 31 1 - - - 6 6 1 7
2010 31 14 7 8 88 124 212 44 49
2011 9 18 11 11 181 184 365 73 91
2012 9 24 19 6 301 222 523 113 101
2013 9 21 12 12 257 237 494 113 83
2014 9 22 13 9 269 252 521 105 147
2015 9 18 11 3 192 208 400 78 100
2016 9 23 13 10 271 309 580 88 163
2017 9 24 20 7 314 267 581 75 187
2018 9 12 5 5 126 137 263 33 75
2019 9 22 11 9 266 275 541 97 129
2020 9 12 5 3 92 97 189 15 49
2021 9 18 3 3 198 204 402 67 87
2022 9 4 - 1 36 36 72 69 17
2023 9 22 6 2 212 187 399 69 113
2024 9 - - - - - - - -
Totals - 255 136 89 2803 2745 5548 1040 1398


Club Champion

Club Champion


All Australian

All Australian


Club Champion

Club Champion


AFC Life Member

AFC Life Member


Club Captain

Club Captain


Best 22 of 30 Years

Best 22 of 30 Years