Just a short while after the conclusion of his professional tenure, former AFL defender Kyle Hartigan has secured a fresh start with the Queenscliff Football Netball Club.

The club proudly announced the arrival of the seasoned backman on Thursday, bringing a wealth of experience from his substantial AFL career, having notched up 135 games with both the Adelaide Crows and Hawthorn Hawks.

Hartigan, whose AFL journey began when he was picked up as the No.14 selection ar the 2012 Rookie Draft, has become renowned for his defensive prowess and reliability on the field, and his performance in the Crows' memorable run to the 2017 Grand Final stands as a career highlight.

Despite a strong career at the elite level, Hartigan is ready to transition to a new role that leverages his vast knowledge of the game. He is currently perfecting his coaching skills through a level 3 coaching course, which Queenscliff hopes will be instrumental in guiding the younger players.

ADELAIDE, AUSTRALIA - MAY 13: Kyle Hartigan of the Crows handballs as he is tackled by Sam Frost of the Demons during the round eight AFL match between the Adelaide Crows and the Melbourne Demons at Adelaide Oval on May 13, 2017 in Adelaide, Australia. (Photo by Daniel Kalisz/Getty Images)

"QFNC are thrilled to announce the signing of KYLE HARTIGAN," a club post read.

"After being pick 14 in the 2012 rookie draft Kyle went on to play 135 AFL games for ADELAIDE and HAWTHORN.

"Not only a great footballer, Kyle is currently doing his level 3 coaching course and will be a great resource for our younger group.We welcome Kyle, his wife Emily and kids Hazel and Henley to the couta bowl in 2024."

The announcement echoes the path taken by many footballers this off-season, who transitioned to a local club to continue their involvement in the sport beyond their professional playing days. As the club and its supporters gear up for the season ahead, the addition of Hartigan promises to bring new energy and expertise to Queenscliff.

The Queenscliff Coutas finished sixth last season, fighting for six wins and a draw during their 12-game season.