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From Darkness to Determination: Josh Corbett’s Inspirational Journey



Fremantle forward Josh Corbett has faced numerous challenges throughout his career, most recently recovering from a long-term hip replacement. Corbett’s journey, filled with obstacles and resilience, highlights his unwavering determination to return to AFL football.


In November 2023, Corbett underwent a full hip replacement, a procedure unprecedented for a return to the highest level of competition. Despite this significant setback, the 28-year-old has a history of overcoming adversity. Corbett was drafted at 22, relatively late, after impressing in the VFL. However, his career took a sudden turn when a stray finger in his eye during a game left him blind in one eye for a month. This injury sidelined him for the rest of the year, challenging his aspirations to play in the AFL.


Corbett reflected on this difficult period on the Better Down Back Podcast, sharing how he had to isolate himself in a dark room, avoiding any light or screen exposure, which was particularly tough for his sociable nature. Despite these hurdles, he persevered, and his determination paid off when he joined Gold Coast’s list in 2018, before being traded to Fremantle in 2022.


His first year with Fremantle was not without challenges, as he managed only five games before deciding to undergo hip replacement surgery. Corbett humorously noted the unusualness of such a surgery at his age, but his hip condition had deteriorated to the point where he could no longer perform his duties on the field effectively.


Six months post-surgery, Corbett is focused on returning to football drills and making a comeback to the AFL. He acknowledges the lack of a blueprint for recovery from such a surgery, but he is determined to be the first to achieve this feat. Corbett’s recovery journey has included some lighter moments, like comparing surgery notes with much older individuals at the pool during his rehabilitation sessions.


Despite the unprecedented nature of his injury, Corbett’s goal remains clear: to return to AFL. His story is a testament to resilience and determination, qualities that have endeared him to fans and teammates alike. As he continues his recovery, Corbett’s journey serves as an inspiration, showcasing that with persistence and a positive attitude, even the most daunting obstacles can be overcome.

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