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Cotchin began his football career in 2008 after being drafted by the Richmond Football Club in the 2007 NAB AFL Draft. Trent debuted in Round 8 the following year against Geelong, where he collected 16 possessions and kicked two goals. In his debut year, Cotchin finished 3rd in the AFL Rising Star award. Despite playing some consistent football in his second year, the 2009 season was struck short for Cotchin due to injury and managed to play only ten games. The 2010 season saw Cotchin elevated to the leadership group and saw him average 19.5 disposals in his 17 matches. His first uninterrupted pre-season saw Cotchin launch into 2011 and become a consistent performer for the Tigers. His efforts in 2011 saw him awarded with his first Jack Dyer Medal (Richmond’s best and fairest) whilst he collected 15 Brownlow Votes.
Cotchin took another step in 2012 to solidify his reputation amongst the AFL’s elite. Averaging 29 disposals and kicking 22 goals, Cotchin capped off the season with another Jack Dyer Medal, an All-Australian team appointment and managed to finish second in the Brownlow Medal with 26 votes. In late 2016, Cotchin was announced the joint winner of the AFL’s most coveted award with Sam Mitchell following Jobe Watson’s decision to relinquish the medal following the Court of Arbitration for Sports decision in relation to the Essendon supplements saga. Cotchin was named Richmond’s Captain ahead of the 2013 season and has since brought his outstanding leadership qualities to the role. As Captain, Cotchin led the Tigers to their first final in 12 seasons. Cotchin’s football continues to maintain consistency, winning a third Jack Dyer Medal in 2014 and top 10 finishes in 2015 and 2016.
The 2017 season saw Cotchin lead Richmond to their first AFL Premiership since 1980. Captained by Cotchin, Richmond completed a monumental turnaround from their 13th placing in the 2016 season to producing the game’s best football in 2017. As captain, Trent finished the premiership year with an impressive average of 23.9 disposals and 3.9 tackles. Cotchin has been praised for his pivotal role in the club’s turnaround and 2017 success. Trent looks ahead to the 2018 season where he will look to defend Richmond’s premiership as well as play his 200th game for the club.
In conjunction to his outstanding career, Cotchin has quickly been recognised for his work in the media, providing terrific insight into the game – his appearances most notably on Seven’s Game Day.